SMU freshman Jordan Free is adjusting to life in a different state as one of nine incoming freshman from out of state. Yet the most difficult part of the transition for the Louisiana native has not been learning streets or common sayings.
"It's hot," the freshman said of his new home. "Not as humid as what I'm used to but it's nice."
No,the biggest adjustment for the Parkview Baptist product has been on the field.
"My high school was mainly a run blocking team," the offensive lineman said. "Obviously, here we're passing 95 percent of the time.
"That's the biggest transition for me," Free said. "Learning how to pass block."
That is not the only on-field adjustment for the Baton Rouge native. Free said the conditioning is very different from what he encountered in high school and that he needs to improve his conditioning if he wants to contribute this year.
With these adjustments, one might wonder why the freshman, who had six offers, including two from in-state schools, opted for out of state SMU and head coach June Jones' spread offense. "(Offensive Line) coach (Dennis) McKnight is a great guy and an awesome coach," he said. "And (Jones) is a big deal."
Because of that the offensive lineman will continue to endure the process of becoming to pass blocking twice as much as run blocking—a huge contrast according to Free. "Run blocking is mainly just trying to get the guy and just move him out the way," he said. "Pass blocking is totally different."
"You've got to be passive and aggressive at the same time. You wait on your guy and once he gets there it's like a dog fight."
Free, however, does not necessarily miss his days of run blocking. He said he does not have a preference between the two.
The freshman, instead, is simply hoping to make the adjustment the spread offense in time to contribute on the field this season. "I'm definitely excited," he said of the chance to play in Jones' prolific offense. "I just want to be a part of it right now."