August 09, 2010
By ODU Athletics
ODU Sports

Aug. 9, 2010

NORFOLK, Va. -- Monday saw the ODU Football Monarchs hit the field for the first of 22 practices this preseason.

The morning started off with the newcomers on the roster getting timed in the 40-yard dash, followed by team meetings, before gathering on the field in mid-afternoon for the first official practice of the 2010 season.

"I was really excited with the intensity and effort," said head coach Bobby Wilder. "I could tell they were excited to be out there. Night and day from last year at this time."

At this point last year, the Monarchs had yet to play a game and the team was still trying to get a feel for one another. The season started last year not knowing what to expect, while this year the returning Monarchs understand what it takes in camp. Of the 89 student-athletes on the roster, 61 are returners who have either played or redshirted last season.

"We came back such a better conditioned football team," noted Wilder on one of the differences between the start of the 2009 camp and today. "It was obvious by watching the speed of the drills. When I came out before practice today, it was a heat index of 100, but nobody was trying to get out of drill or reps. They all wanted more."

Quarterbacks Thomas DeMarco (Palm Desert, Calif.), Dominique Blackman (Los Angeles, Calif.), and Tommy Reamon (Newport News, Va.) all took reps during the afternoon during a trio of team drills. With the Monarchs sporting only helmets for Monday's practice, there wasn't a lot of contact, but the coaches still strived the defensive unit to go after the ball.

The Monarchs also worked on PAT/Field Goal install, which featured kickers Drew Hareza (McDonald, Pa.) and Northeastern transfer Jarod Brown (Yorktown, Va.). Last season, Hareza made 50 of his 51 point after attempts and found his way through the uprights on 7 of his 13 field goals attempts accounting for 71 of ODU's point total. Brown, meanwhile, joined the squad this spring after transferring from West Virginia where he was a walk-on with the Mountaineer program. Coming out of Grafton High School, he was a Second Team Virginia High School Coaches Association, All-Region Group AA, and First Team All-Bay Rivers District placekicker.

There is no rest for the weary as the Monarchs are back at it tomorrow morning.


One area that head coach Bobby Wilder was particularly pleased with at the end of Monday's practice was communication on the field. Wilder praised his squad at the end of practice number one as an area that vastly improved from the spring drills.

Student tickets for the September 4th with Jacksonville will be made available at the Constant Center Box Office beginning on Monday, August 30th at 7 a.m. with line-up beginning at the box office at 6 a.m. NO camping out will be permitted. Students must present a valid ODU student ID. Other games will be made available ten (10) days prior kickoff at either the Constant Center Box Office or Webb Center.

Drop by the Tailgate & Fan Fest on Kaufman Mall before each and every Monarch home football game. Kaufman Mall will be turned into a new fan experience with food and beverages available for purchase, inflatable games, bands, the Monarchs' pre-game radio show broadcast and open space for tailgating.

Just a quick video of the team huddling up before taking the field this afternoon over on Facebook. Don't forget to "like" Old Dominion Athletics if you haven't already.

ODU Football media day will be held Wednesday, August 11th. This event is closed to the public. Members of the media wishing to attend, please contact the ODU Sports Information Office. Check us out on twitter (@ODUFootball) where links for much of the media action will be listed.

Looking for season tickets? Make sure you are on the list! Sign up to be on the ODU Football Season Ticket Wait List as those on the list will be notified as season tickets become available. Don't get shut out...Be in the Game...Be in the Blue.