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Saints release official statement

Just a little while ago, the New Orleans Saints released an official statement regarding the NFL's penalties.

The full statement from the organization can be read below.

Today, Commissioner Goodell apprised us of the severe penalties facing our club, as proposed by the NFL.

We recognize our fans’ concerns and we regret the uncertainty this episode has created for them. We are humbled by the support our organization has received from our fans today in the wake of this announcement, and we ask them to continue to stand with us, as they have done in the past, when both our team and our city have overcome greater adversities.

To our fans, the NFL and the rest of our league, we offer our sincere apology and take full responsibility for these serious violations.

It has always been the goal of the New Orleans Saints to create a model franchise and to impact our league in a positive manner.

There is no place for bounties in our league and we reiterate our pledge that this will never happen again.

Skip Holtz impressed with day 1

From the looks of it, Skip Holtz couldn't be much happier with how things went in their first spring practice. 

Holtz said that new defensive coordinator Chris Cosh was very accommodating to the idea of keeping the defensive structure and lingo from last season. A large reason for that was because they both believed it was much easier for Cosh to learn it, than to teach 50 guys something brand new, and Holtz says Cosh has learned it in a hurry.

Holtz comments multiple times how impressed he is with the work ethic, leadership and attitude of this years team.

Mack Brown not happy with new helmet rule

Mack Brown and the rest of the Texas staff met with officials yesterday to talk about the new rule changes for the fall, and left with a few complaints, starting with the new helmet rule.

The new helmet rule states that if a player loses his helmet during a play, he must sit out the next play, and depending on the situation, the play may be stopped, or the player without his helmet may not be allowed to continue playing.

As Mack explains "If I'm a defensive end rushing the passer, supposedly I can rush him, but quarterback steps up, I can't continue to rush or it's a penalty, if you lose your helmet, you have to come out of the game for a play, regardless. So, your quarterback could lose his helmet on the next to the last play of the game and he's out for the last play. And also if you lose your helmet within the last minutes of the half at the end of the game, you can have the 10-second runoff rule." 

The bottom line is that Brown thinks that more coaches should have input before the rules take effect. He explains that as it sits today, nine coaches from all different divisions meet with a committee to make the rule changes.

"I really wish we would have more input instead of just being told, because we didn't even understand some of these until yesterday. What we've done when we make rules and make the official's judgment in a tough spot, I think we're hurting ourselves because how in the world are you going to know when to blow that whistle?" 


Video: Winter workout highlights

The guys at UNC Pembroke, an independant D-II school located in Pembroke, North Carolina, sent us a well put together video highlighting their winter workouts.

Since bringing back football in 2007, head coach Pete Shinnick and his staff have put together some impressive teams, including an 8-3 finish last season and back to back 9 win seasons in 2008 and 2009. They were also an impressive 7-1 last year when scoring over 30 points.

The video is a good mix of weight room workouts, on the field agility and conditioning, and some interesting combat drills to take note of.

Fresno State focused on tempo

New Fresno State offensive coordinator Dave Schramm was not impressed with their latest scrimmage and afterwards challenged the pride of the offensive group.

"You can't come out and play this game if you're not sure you want to. If you don't want to, don't. We'll find 11 guys that want to play. And this game, it's a team game, so every guy has got to do their job on every single play." he said.

Looking back on the scrimmage, Schramm noted it was a different guy on each play that wasn't focused because of the new tempo and less than perfect conditions.

"The thing that we've got to come out of spring ball understanding is that we can stress people with our tempo. We have to know how to get lined up, we have to understand what our assignment is, we have to get lined up in the right spot, we have to know the snap count and we've got to go." he explained.  

"It's just new to them. They get tired and they get gassed, and all of a sudden the brain slows down a little bit. But it's good. Our defense is doing a nice job, and we're making some plays at times."


Indiana coaches getting reps at quarterback

Head coach Kevin Wilson and the Hoosiers returned to their spring practice schedule yesterday and the staff is getting more involved than ever.

Towards the end of the clip, Wilson explains that since they're only 2 deep at quarterback right now, a few coaches (including himself) have worked their way into a few running drills and commented "that's not good to see", which got quite a few laughs from the reporters.

No country club members at Youngstown

Youngstown State defensive coordinator Joe Tresey met with the media for the annual spring football press conference earlier today.

Tresey opened up by saying that him and his wife are excited about being back in Ohio and very excited to be working for one of the top FCS programs in the country historically. Coach Tresey added that he and head coach Eric Wolford meshed well right off the bat because of their similar blue collar backgrounds, and furthermore, neither have ever belonged to a country club.

A little further down the line, one reporter asks Tresey to describe his personality, to which he responds "...kind of laid back...peachy, just a feel good kind of guy". The media in attendance got quite a kick out of that answer.

This is how you prepare for a tough schedule

The University of South Alabama is entering their fourth season of existence, and have been able to make some impressive gains on the field and in the weight room.

Last year they finished 6-4 as an FCS Independent. This season the Jaguars will take on North Carolina State, Mississippi State, Troy, FAU, FIU, Arkansas State and Hawaii... talk about a tough schedule.

The strength staff will definitely have them prepared for the big boys. Take a look at the video below showing the team maxing out. These guys are throwing around some serious weight.