MCCBOT Practice Report

The holidays are almost here, and yet, the Meineke Car Care Bowl is also fast approaching. The Wildcats put in a brief but productive practice in Evanston on Monday morning, before heading home for a short break. Go inside the getaway day practice in the Nicolet Center.

The Wildcats faced one final practice before their holiday break. The team put in a 14-period practice inside the Nicolet Center before departing home.

Pat Fitzgerald was pleased with how Northwestern handled it's pre-bowl week practices. The Wildcats continued to install game plan for Texas A&M throughout the course of the 10 days.

Many players were forced to leave immediately after practice. My post-practice chat with Al Netter was an abbreviated one as he had to catch a flight back to California.

The worry with a getaway day practice is the idea of having a lack of focus with a break in mind. That, however, was not a problem for the Wildcats. The players moved rapidly through each drill, and had a productive practice. Fitzgerald commended the team's focus throughout the practices.

The Wildcats received some good news, as redshirt freshman safety Ibraheim Campbell practiced for the first time in 10 days. Campbell appeared to be moving well during practice.

The play of the day came from walk-on receiver Cermak Bland. Facing the first-team defense, quarterback Zack Oliver scrambled out of the pocket and targeted Bland -- simulating an Aggie receiver -- who made a one-handed catch while falling to the ground against a defender.

NU senior superback Drake Dunsmore continues to put together a strong season. His efforts in practice have been strong, and each quarterback seems to have a nice comfort level with him.

The practice ended with a Zack Oliver pass being intercepted by senior safety David Arnold, who ran the ball to the endzone for a touchdown.

In the post-practice huddle, Fitzgerald reminded his players to use smart judgement while returning home.

The team will reconvene in Evanston on Dec. 25, before traveling to Houston on the following day.

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