Notes: Wildcats return to Evanston

After a night of sleeping at home, the Wildcats returned to the practice field in Evanston, that following a week-long stay in Kenosha. files these notes on Northwestern's preparations for the upcoming season.

Northwestern players and coaches were happy to sleep in their own beds for a change. After spending a week at Camp Kenosha, the Wildcats returned home to Evanston on Monday and took to the practice field on Tuesday morning.

• The unseasonable weather continued on Tuesday morning. It was a breezy 70 degrees as the team took the field in full pads. Not bad for late August.

• It was tremendous to see Treyvon Green back on the practice field. It was his second straight day on the practice field (NU also practiced on Monday in Kenosha). Green confirmed he suffered a concussion when he was injured during the first week of practice. However, Green is healthy and worked in with the first-team offense at times. It is expected he'll be a part of the regular running back rotation.

• During live team drill, Green scampered up the middle and thought he had a hole, but was met with a tackle and taken down. He quickly bounced back up and ran into the huddle. He admitted that was a good feeling.

• The defensive backs took part in a footwork drill today which focused on making proper cuts. Coach Jerry Brown ensured there were no slips or errors. During the course of the drill, sophomore safety Ibraheim Campbell was very vocal, encouraging his teammates to perfect their cuts. Campbell has emerged as a leader for the defense, and is someone the younger players have looked to.

• After practice, when meeting with the media, Campbell was asked why Northwestern fans should feel confident in the defense. He replied: "We've been working and it's going to be exciting to watch this year."

• There was more movement on the offensive line. Chuck Porcelli, who has primarily served as a tackle, moved to right guard today. Geoff Mogus continued to work in with the first-team offense at left guard, with Matt Frazier taking reps there, too. In addition, Eric Olson and Jack Konopka continued to battle for the job at right tackle.

Pat Fitzgerald said the rotation at each position -- especially on the offensive line -- is primarily to ensure the reserves are ready for the season, if they're needed. The positive for Northwestern is that the offensive lineman are more versatile than ever and came move to different position without issue.

• The connection between Kain Colter and Kyle Prater is beginning to translate to the field. During 7-on-7 drills, Colter perfected a pump fake, then lofted one down the sidelines to Prater, who was moving in motion with the fake. The two are on the same page and it's a thing of beauty.

• On another throw toward the sidelines, Prater made a great catch and turned it upfield. When freshman cornerback Dwight White approached him, Prater stuck out the hand and threw down a forceful stiff arm which White on the ground.

• Freshman running back Malin Jones was back in action on Tuesday after missing some days in Kenosha with an injury. Jones was running with some force and is able to really accelerate to the next level. He is going to be a great running back, but it's unlikely he gets the chance this year.

• It appears that the superback position is still wide open. You can count redshirt freshman Mark Szott in with the likely candidate for playing time. Szott is excellent in space and has the athleticism to bring down any pass thrown his way. However, he lacks the size to play at the end of the offensive line.

• Back up in their own endzone, running back Tyris Jones took a carry up the middle and separated himself from the defense as he sprinted down the field. To finish the play, Jones continued his run -- long after the whistle -- and ran 98 yard to the endzone for a touchdown.

• Northwestern returns to the practice field on Wednesday morning, then will finish camp later this week. Next Monday, the focus turns to Syracuse and the start of the new season.

Chris Emma has covered recruiting, college athletics and professional baseball for FOX Sports Next since 2009. Emma covered the Nebraska Cornhuskers for Big Red Report, and currently covers the Northwestern Wildcats and Chicago Cubs. He currently resides on Chicago's north side.
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