Jones Whistles In New Era

Since the spring of 2005, Bearcat Insider has followed the Bearcats as they use the allowed days by the NCAA to prepare for the next season. Wednesday, opened the third new era of Bearcats football as Butch Jones opened his first camp since being named head coach.

Since being named the University of Cincinnati head football coach Butch Jones promised things would be high tempo and intense. Many wondered how Jones could follow up what many considered a higher tempo under Brian Kelly. He answered today with loud music during the early periods and coaches' chest bumping players and other coaches. While this does not guarantee victories in the fall, players felt the difference and showed their support on the field.

"I thought our kids did a good job for the first day, but tomorrow will be critical and each day we progress in spring ball is going to be even more critical as we continue to go. One more day in helmet and shorts and then we get into some full pads."

Like with most coaching changes players, and on field support must get use to the different atmosphere and demands. Day one may have seen a spot here or there not go smooth, but overall the tempo was never missed and Jones got a good first practice under his belt with his new team.

For the most part the released depth chart was used to set the early stages of this spring session, but no player should feel comfortable with what is on a piece of paper now. A few players missed the first days of practice due to finals but stopped by as they finished.

As for the players you can see some differences in physical size and appearance since they last took the field.

J.K. Schaffer continues to get bigger and former Bearcats linebacker Andre Revels feels Schaffer is just starting to understand playing at the college level.

"J.K. has all the tools," Revels said during practice. "He's smart and works hard on and off the field. If he can stay healthy he'll have a great chance to take his game to the next level."

Walt Stewart is another player who looks physically bigger and many expect Stewart to continue to take his game to another level by the time the fall comes around.

One thing that was noticed was the slimmer look of the offensive linemen. While in the past the goal was to have guys at the 300-pound mark, most players came in about 10-pounds less.

The quarterback battle has Zach Collaros out in front but Chazz Anderson is working hard. Brendon Kay and Demetrius Richardson are also looking to open eyes and Kay made sure to stay after practice to work on several throws.

We'll have more on a couple of Bearcats later and also be at practice on Thursday.

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