New Hampshire Football Report

UNH offense dealing with change

DURHAM – Quarterback Trevor Knight and the University of New Hampshire football team put practice No. 5 of their spring session in the books Thursday morning and will hit Wildcat Stadium for their sixth practice on Saturday morning.

“I think it’s all going well,” Knight said. “We’re out here competing. It’s getting really, really competitive. Coach Mac (Sean McDonnell) keeps it interesting with a lot of competition. Someone’s doing up-downs at the end of practice. It makes it fun.”

McDonnell enters his 20th season as head coach in the fall with the season opener set for Aug. 30 at Maine.

The first of six home games in Wildcat Stadium is scheduled for Sept. 8 against Colgate. The other home games are Oct. 6 vs. Holy Cross; Oct. 13 vs. Stony Brook; Oct. 20 vs. Delaware; Nov. 3 vs. James Madison; and Nov. 10 vs. Albany.

Spring football runs through the annual Blue-White game on May 5 at 11 a.m.

Knight has been working with a group of coaches on the offensive side who are new or working in new or tweaked positions.

Offensive line coach and run game coordinator Alex Miller and wide receivers coach and pass game coordinator Michael Ferzoco will share the play-calling duties. Keith LeVan, a former Wildcat wide receiver, returns to the program as quarterbacks coach. Former Wildcat defensive back Casey DeAndrade is the running backs coach.

The changes occurred when Ryan Carty, the former offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach, moved on to Sam Houston State.

“I don’t think there’s going to be that much change,” Knight said. “We’re still all the same players. We have a lot of the same concepts. I don’t think much is going to change. We’re just going to go out and put up as many points as we can.”

Knight, who will be a senior, passed for 26 touchdowns and threw 10 interceptions last season.

The Wildcats averaged 22.1 points, which was fifth-best in the league. James Madison led the league at 34.4 points a game, Richmond was next at 30.9, Stony Brook was at 29.2 and Maine at 24.6.

McDonnell has been pleased with the spring sessions thus far.

“A third of the way through,” McDonnell said. “It’s been a good five days. Today could have been a little bit better for us. We’re putting stuff in and as you get through that stuff, whether it’s red-zone stuff, third-down stuff or regular first-down stuff there’s always some nuances about certain things you’ve got to do. The older kids understand it and have been through it.”

Younger players are in the mix at some positions, particularly where veterans are rehabbing injuries.

“We’ve got a lot of young kids working at wide receiver right now,” McDonnell said. “We don’t have Malik Love going right now, we don’t have Neil O’Connor going. Kieran Presley’s doing well out there. Joey Carroll’s had a good spring so far. The other guys have got to get caught up with what we’re doing and how we’re doing it out there.”

Senior running back Trevon Bryant missed all of last season with a knee injury and will be ready for the season but is limited now.

“Pleased with Carlos Washington, Jr. at the running back position,” McDonnell said. “He’s showing some flashes and continuing from where he was last fall on the scout team. He keeps doing some things. When you get into the situation where you’re doing our stuff all the time, you’ve got to know and understand it and he’s caught on to it pretty good.”

Washington is a redshirt freshman.

The Wildcats get back at it Saturday morning.

“It’s fun,” McDonnell said. “I tell them you’ve got to take advantage of every day that we’re out here. You don’t get these days back.”

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