Tuesday, August 09, 2005
Gone are former four-year starters such as quarterback Jared Allen and linebacker Chris Laskowski.
While the Owls
certainly could use those players who helped build the program when they open
their season Sept. 3 against
"If we have any lingering memories of them, then we haven't done what we have asked the rest of them to do," Owls coach Howard Schnellenberger said of the former players who were noticeably absent Monday. "We can remember their accomplishments in the still of the night, but we need to think about the work at hand."
In the place of those seniors, some of whom played in every game in FAU history, are 53 freshman who at this time last year were going through high school practices.
In one year, Florida Atlantic has gone from the most experienced team in college football, to one of the least experienced, with just 17 seniors coming into camp this season.
"Everyone is a competitor
out here," freshman receiver Cortez "Snoop"
The next wave of FAU players will be required to leave their own mark.
The players already have noticed a difference in intensity and urgency this year, without the former players.
"We'll bring them along as fast as we can and as slow as we must," Schnellenberger said of the younger players.
But the older players, especially the six returning starters, are ready for the challenge.
"We're going to miss them
a lot, but there are other guys out here now to look up to," said senior
linebacker Shomari Earls, a
Noteworthy: Running back Roderick Ferguson,
linebacker Christopher Goff and defensive lineman Eldrid
Jones did not report with the rest of the freshman.