Ball State third-year head football coach Pete Lembo (@Pete_Lembo) conducted the team's second practice of the spring at Scheumann Stadium.
Q: Obviously, the starting quarterback position is in pretty good hands heading into the spring. Talk a little about the backups and what you hope to see out of them this spring.
Coach Lembo (@Pete_Lembo): Kyle Kamman and Ozzie Mann are two terrific young men. They are both strong students, they have tight knit families and they are passionate about being at Ball State. Both players have different strengths and weaknesses. Ozzie is a big strong guy with a live arm. He played in a very different system in high school, although it was multiple. Ozzie is still learning the nuances of our system and how we identify defenses. It reminds me of Keith Wenning and Kelly Page in the spring of 2011. Kyle has a good feel for the game. The defensive identification and understanding of the scheme comes very natural to him. Kyle is not as big or strong as Ozzie. The good news is that both guys are getting a lot of work with the 2's and 3's this spring. In the fall, Jack Milas will join the group, so the competition level will increase.
Q: You consistently praise the strength and conditioning staff during the "offseason". How does the routine and effort in the weight room continue through spring practice?
Coach Lembo (@Pete_Lembo): Absolutely, I truly believe we have one of the best strength coaches in the country in our program here at Ball State. David Feeley has made a tremendous impact since arriving in February of 2011 and continues to make us better each and every day. We lost some big, strong guys to graduation, but some younger guys have made excellent progress under Coach Feeley's supervision. In the offseason we lift four days a week, but that gets reduced to two days a week once spring practice begins. When Coach Feeley has the guys on Mondays and Thursdays, he will continue to keep the intensity level and expectations very high.
Q: The team has chosen "Anything, Anytime, Anywhere" as the theme for 2013. Can you explain a little about how that came about and how it is applied to this year's team.
Coach Lembo (@Pete_Lembo): Our leadership council put a lot of time and thought into this year's theme. It's a slogan that has been used by the Special Forces in the United States Army. We have a great respect and admiration for the job our military does to protect our country. Throughout our discussions, the players kept going back to a feeling of humility and a true understanding of just how difficult it is to win football games. Our success last year does not guarantee us anything in 2013. So the "Anything" piece recognizes the fact we have to stay grounded and earn everything we get. The "Anytime, Anywhere" portion of the theme is a perfect fit for day to day life in the Mid-American Conference. We play on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. We play on the road in front of big crowds at places like Clemson and smaller crowds elsewhere. We play at various times of day and in various weather conditions. We focus on what we can control, not on what we cannot control. I am excited about the theme and appreciate the input of the players on our leadership council.