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Fans get preseason look at Blue Hose

Presbyterian WR Wyatt Hodges (4) starts a route as QB Gabe Carroll (9) prepares to deliver a pass during Saturday’s Fan Day scrimmage at Bailey Memorial Stadium.

Presbyterian football fans got a first look at the Blue Hose under new head coach Kevin Kelley Saturday during Fan Day, which featured the final live scrimmage before the season starts on Sept. 4.

And, as promised, there wasn’t a single punter in sight.

Kelley arrived at PC soon after the Pioneer Football League’s spring season concluded and after the firing of former head coach Tommy Spangler, bringing with him his analytics driven, no-punt philosophy to the Blue Hose from Arkansas high school power Pulaski Academy.

“As we have progressed from last Saturday’s scrimmage through today, I think we have continued to build and am happy with the mental side of our game so far,” said Kelley. “I respect our guys being able to come out and do both the physical and mental side of things on the football field.”

Players have been asked to adapt to new offensive and defensive schemes with Kelley calling the plays on offense and a new defensive staff taking over on defense.

“We made some big plays, which I think is going to be critical,” said Joey Orck, offensive coordinator and line coach for the Blue Hose. “That’s something that Coach Kelley has been harping on – those big plays, those 20-yard-plus plays from scrimmage.

Presbyterian head coach Kevin Kelley signals in a player Saturday during the Fan Day scrimmage.

“We had some guys make some big plays ­– that’s a good thing. Scoring from distance is good. That’s an emphasis from (Kelley). The team that has the most 20-yard plays is going to win the game.”

PC opens its season at 4 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 4 at Bailey Memorial Stadium against St. Andrews.

Kelley said he is pleased with the team’s progress with the new system with less than two weeks before the regular season begins.

“If you asked me on Aug. 1 if this is where we would be I would have taken it based on the time we had with these guys,” Kelley said. “I’m pleased to have this behind us as the kids focus on what’s next, and now we can look towards the opener on Sept. 4.”

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