Notes: One Final Spring Practice

It was a beautiful spring day in Evanston for one of Northwestern's last practices outside before Saturday's spring game. Get the latest with the Wildcats in this PurpleWildcats.com practice report.

•A familiar face in attendance on the sidelines -- Former DB Brian Peters made the trip to the stadium to catch practice.

•Head coach Pat Fitzgerald was impressed with his team's initial intesity, but bemoaned lack of focus as practice progressed. "Some of our inexperience showed to day, some guys are counting the day instead of making the day count," Fitz said.

•Freshman DB Nick VanHoose showed his physicality with a couple of huge hits. Fitz said he isn't worried about lack of experience in the backfield.

"We gained a lot of experience last year through half of our secondary. I believe that through competition, good players become great and great players become special, and we've got great competition."

•That competition really showed as the DBacks were successful in breaking up a number of long passes, RS freshman Mike Eshun in particular.

•And speaking of experience in the secondary, Fitz spoke on the transformation of Ibraheim Campbell from freshman to the only experienced DB. "He's taken the attitude that every rep is an opportunity for him to get better, so I like where he's at," Fitz said.

•The receivers stood out today, making some great catches. Freshman WR Pierre Youngblood-Ary was all hands, with a few great shakes. A nice one-handed catch over the middle was a highlight for WR Kyle Prater.

•Veneric Mark looked to be settling into his new role at running back. He looked extremely quick and agile on his runs. Fitz is open to using guys wherever they can contribute saying, "we've moved him around a little bit to get him to play to his strengths, and he is making some plays."

•As the team prepares for the culmination of spring ball Saturday at the spring game, Fitz had a few focus points for the team: "We need to finish strong and take the things that we learned through the two big scrimmages we had and go out and execute."

•Because the spring game is a big draw for recruits, Fitz emphasized the biggest thing he wanted his team to show during the game: "Number one, we want to show that our guys are going to compete."


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