McNeese Cowboys hold first summer football practice of the new season

Published: Aug. 2, 2023 at 6:40 PM CDT
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LAKE CHARLES, La. (KPLC) - In the early hours of Wednesday morning, the McNeese Cowboys took the field for their first official football practice of the summer with plenty of position groups still looking to find an identity.

Head coach of the Cowboys; Gary Goff, is now heading into his second year at the head of the ship, and he understands that with it being his second year in Lake Charles, there are more expectations on the team to find more success than their 4-7 record showed in 2022.

“We have a lot of excitement, a lot of nervous excitement, but it was a good day one, there’s obviously some areas we need to work on and we’re not sharp in a lot of areas and you know just some things being tighten up, but nothing major, I love the energy we had as we took the field and that carried throughout the day,” said Coach Goff. “Obviously we have the pressure to win, I get that but I feel a little bit more comfortable and at ease with the team because I feel like they trust us, they trust what we’re doing, they’re starting to trust the process and we didn’t have that a year ago and that’s so hard to have coming in as a brand new staff and you’re looking at 85% of the team you didn’t sign and you still have that trust and trust takes a while to develop.”

One of the captains of this year’s team is sixth-year senior Trey Vondenstein, who has been through all the ups and downs with this football program and made it a point on Wednesday to take in his final first day of practice.

“It’s like Christmas morning, you wake up, you got the jitters, we all went to sleep last night, and laid our outfits out on the bed,” said Vondenstein. “It’s always great, you get the ball rolling and it’s going to be a marathon for sure but I mean we’re out here, we’re in these conditions, we’re getting ready for it and I think honestly, we have the team right now that can adapt and conquer for sure.”

Another big part of the offseason is the Cowboy’s quarterback situation as this season they are coming into very familiar territory with having two transfers once again fighting for the team’s starting job. Coach Goff believes as the summer rolls along the team will find the answer they need at quarterback and made it clear that he is happy to have two quality signal callers at his disposal this season.

“I still want them to improve drastically and I spoke to them about halfway through practice about the fact that they need to come out here and be our quarterback, but both those young men have had a really good summer and they are both developing as leaders so we’ll have a great competition all camp,” said Goff.

The Cowboys return to the field on Thursday for practice number two.