The coach also told the crowd of 50 or so Bluegrass State Marshall supporters he was very happy with the recently completed two-a-days camp. "We really banged them the first week or so," said Snyder. "The 140-150 play scrimmage, they really hit. The first 10 days, I was impressed with the speed of this year's group, but I saw a tired team on Saturday." Snyder thought being tired, plus the limited offense and defensive sets for the first team, led to a lackluster scrimmage. "We still got some things done, however," Sndyer continued. "We continued to test our young corners, and got too many penalties." For the second consecutive scrimmage, Marshall's corners drew three pass interference calls.
The coach also encouraged fans to purchase tickets, as well as tickets for Saturday's Quarterback Club Reverse Raffle at the Radisson Hotel in Huntington. "The Quarterback Club allows us as a mid-major program to spend the money that helps us to climb above that level," said Snyder. Tickets are available through the MU Football office at 304-696-6464 and are $100 apiece for a couple. 40 raffle prizes will be drawn, including a trip to Aruba, while the first ticket wins $500 and the final ticket wins $1,500. Marshall's final season ticket Choose-A-Seat Day sold nearly 200 more football tickets for the 2006 season, pushing the total to nearly 13,200. The all-time record is 13,818, set in 2000 after the Herd was 13-0 and No. 10 in the nation. "We need everyone there every Saturday," said Snyder, and season tickets this year makes sure you will get a ticket for the MU-WVU game in Huntington in 2007.
At Monday's practice, Marshall saw the return of injured players like Doug Legursky, William Barber, Maurice Kitchens, David Ziegler, Chubb Small and Cody Slate. "I told No. 85, I was sure glad to see him back," said Snyder of his freshman tight end. The coach said he caught a seam route for a big gain. One of the reasons Slate was recruited was his 4.5 speed at tight end. Defensive end Ryland Wilson went in practice, although he wore cross trainers instead of football cleats for his sore ankle. There were a number of players missing from practice, like quarterback Jimmy Skinner, tackle Wesley Jones, Hiram Moore, Terick Thomas and Shavar Greer, but they were in afternoon classes on Monday, not usually a practice day for the Herd once the season starts because of the amount of labs taught only on Monday's at the university. Snyder told the crowd Monday night the Herd will work on red zone and green zone play on Tuesday, with ones vs. ones, and the defense will get additional live work on Wednesday, with Snyder coaching the scout team offense against the first team defense in further goal line work.
Also in attendance at Monday's practice was an NFL scout from the Indianapolis Colts, who was seen watching numerous different players and groups of players. Ahmad Bradshaw continues to rehab his ankle and not practice, although he was walking without any limp or apparent pain on the sidelines of Saturday's scrimmage. Snyder is shooting for a return of his junior tailback by early next week. His greatest concern is getting the starting offensive line some work together, which has been hampered by injuries to Ziegler, Legursky and Jones. Monday, all starters worked together, with John Inman taking snaps at right tackle with Jones out. Ziegler and Brian Leggett were at guards, Legursky at center and Seth Cook at left tackle, along with tight end Brian Shope.
NOTES:There was some concerns as early in practice a helicopter circled the field many times with the door open and a camera pointed towards the Herd practice. It turned out Warner Brothers was getting some additional shots for the upcoming "We Are Marshall" movie, scheduled to be released on December 22...Ivan Clark rejoined the Herd on Monday, as Snyder used his senior defensive back's spot in August camp to test out young players. Clark has been "Mr. Homecoming," blocking kicks against UAB and Buffalo over the past two seasons and will again be counted on for the Herd's special teams...It appears back Kyle Echols will also rejoin the team, but defensive lineman Colin Kelly has reportedly decided to call it a career...The "Friends of Coal Bowl" trophy will be unveiled on Wednesday in a press conference at Marshall's Joan C. Edwards Stadium. The trophy features a coal football, out of the state's largest coal seam, and the football and the base of the trophy are made out of West Virginia glass. The state is known worldwide for exceptional glass making at plants like Blenko Glass in Milton, Hamon Glass in Scott Depot and Fenton Art Glass Company in Williamstown...The Marshall Alumni Association tailgate at Morgantown will be at 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. at Krepps Park, near the WVU Coliseum. Admission is $10 per person and includes food, drinks and giveaways. Students with current Marshall Student ID's will be admitted for $5. Parking at the tailgate is available on a first-come, first-served basis for $5. Overflow parking is available at the Coliseum and several nearby churches. Kickoff for the game is set for 3:30 p.m. at Puskar Stadium