Anderson Ready To Get Going

Arkansas State coach Blake Anderson said he is ready. Tomorrow we find out if the Arkansas State Red Wolves are as the team opens pre-season camp at 8:45 a.m. The team will have once a day workouts until Fan Appreciation Day on Aug. 16 at 10 a.m. All practices are open to the public.

"For us it is time to get going,’’ said Anderson. “It has been 192 days since I was introduced as the coach and now we are less than 32 days and we have spent a lot of time and prep to get to this point. We have met ad nausea and I promise there are still things we need to go over. I told them this morning I am ready to get on the field and make some mistakes so we can know what to fix.

“We’re excited and we have communicated with our kids and they have had a great summer.”

This is Anderson’s first head coaching job. He was hired away from North Carolina in December after serving as the Tar Heels’ offensive coordinator.

“We have been doing this for so long I have not even grasped that my role is different,” said Anderson. “ Almost every staff meeting you have in the last few days before practice, whether you are head coach, a position coach or a coordinator, you start thinking what have we forgotten. More than anything there are jitters of getting out there and seeing what you missed.

“Other than being head coach is doesn’t feel any different we just have fall camp coming around and we have a lot of work to do.”

The Red Wolves have not been able to work with the players this summer; the everyone at Media Day praised the work of Matt Shadeed, the team’s strength and conditioning coach.

“From all my conversations, very long conversations with Matt Shadeed, including yesterday and this morning, he is excited about how the summer has gone and about how hard they have worked and how hard they have prepared. I was in the office and see them bouncing around here even when they didn’t have to be here. All that really shows me is I think he have a group of guys who really have had a great summer and have prepared themselves for a great fall camp. They are in as good as shape as you could ask and are as prepared as you could ask.’’

The Red Wolves, three-time defending champions, have been picked second in the Sun Belt Conference. They shared the league title with UL-Lafayette last season. The Cajuns are the favorite to win the title this season. ASU has not been the favorite in any of its winning seasons.

Anderson said the Red Wolves put in about 75 to 80 percent of the offense during the summer, the team’s foundation.

“I would love to think that we start where we left off and we are not starting over,’’ he said.

“We are going to move forward with some things and add some things with our schemes. We will deal with a lot more situational football.

“Best case scenario, things go perfectly, you have everything in place. We have a detailed schedule for everything the next month of getting everything in that you would need through the season. … But at any time during that month we don’t hit the checkmarks we need to hit and things are going well you put the brakes on and you deal with you got. If we can’t go any further, we put those schemes on the shelf we will make sure we are good at the basics and that is what we will do. I won’t really know for a couple of weeks. We don’t know how they will handle some of those things that have not been thrown at the yet.

“We have a good 70 to 75 to 80 percent of our offense in. We have way more than enough in to play football.”