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PRESEASON PRACTICE UPDATE: Rain Forces Sudden Change

Courtesy: ODU Athletics
         
Release: August 14, 2011
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Aug. 14, 2011

NORFOLK, Va. -- Saturday's first two-a-day proved to be a sudden change for the Football Monarchs with a spirited morning session and rain changing afternoon plans.

"Coming off yesterday's practice, which was a very physical practice, I was very excited with the way they came out and competed," said head coach Bobby Wilder. "We really challenged them in this morning's scrimmages."

Back in full pads for the morning session, the Monarchs were working on more scrimmage situations with both sides of the ball putting in several notable moments.

Quarterback and Walter Payton Watch List member Thomas DeMarco (Palm Desert, Calif.) orchestrated an 89-yard drive bringing the blue jerseys to within one-yard of the end zone.

On fourth and one, the offense tried to punch in the ball up the middle for the score, but the defensive line would not budge eliciting a huge roar and outpouring of celebration from the white jerseys.

Offensive Coordinator Brian Scott was quick to remind the offense of the similar situation the Monarchs were in against Cal Poly last season where the Monarchs, trailing by only a touchdown midway through the third quarter, were at fourth and one at the Mustangs' eight-yard line and were unable to move the chains. The Monarchs ended up falling to the nationally-ranked team from the left coast, 50-37.

"That was a really an emotional point of the scrimmage, because both sides of the ball wanted to win badly," noted Wilder of that particular play. "That's the first time in this preseason camp we've had that situation where it was fourth and goal on the one-yard line."

"I was very excited with what I saw from our defensive line," Wilder continued. "Right now, Ronnie Cameron, Edmon McClam, Chad King, and Chris Burnette, our starting front four, are playing at a high level."

On another play, McClam raced through the line for what would've been a sack if the quarterbacks weren't in red jerseys and off limits from being taken down. Prior to the preseason in a Q&A, McClam had mentioned that among his memorable moments as a Monarch are every time he gets a sack.

Other plays for the defense included safety Fred Credle (Chesapeake, Va.) breaking up a pass intended for tight end Tommy Reamon (Newport News, Va.). Credle had missed spring practice and the later part of last fall with injury.

Fellow safety and newcomer Neal-Anthony Hale (Norfolk, Va.) tried to get into the mix nearly picking off a pass to redshirt freshman Antonio Vaughan (Ahoskie, N.C.). Stepping front of the receiver, Hale had the ball bounce up from his hands where Vaughan did a great job of positioning himself to complete the reception, keeping it live and in play.

Another freshman moment saw Kirk Spellman (Chesapeake, Va.) receive a pass up the middle, shake off the oncoming defense, and take off up the left side for a touchdown.

The rain then rolled in for practice number two of the day. It wasn't a complete washout as the Monarchs were able to get introduce their kick off return team before lightening forced the squad off the field for the afternoon.

The ODU Football Monarchs will hold another two-a-day tomorrow.

MONARCH MOMENTS:

CHECK THE MAILBOX:
According to twitterverse (@ODUFootball) season tickets are starting to arrive in the mail. Reminder that parking passes are being mailed out separately by the ODAF office after Aug. 20 and will not be included with the season tickets.

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