Marauders Begin Tomorrow | VideoScott Westerberg | 8/31/2012
Where U-Mary still has some questions, though, is in the running game.
"If you can`t run the ball successfully then a team can overload to protect the pass and then you`re going to struggle to do that as well, so we need to focus on being consistent in the run game and that will open up a lot of things in the pass game as well," Steffan said.
A big part of a successful run game starts up front where the Marauders are breaking in a pair of new tackles.
"We have a lot of leadership at our center and guard positions, so they`re taking care of them. They`re teaching them. They`re letting them know what to do, and they`re getting on them when they do something wrong. Our offensive line is really working hard to protect Craig and let us do some thing on offense," Steffan said.
On the defensive side of the ball, U-Mary has a new D-coordinator who won`t change things entirely but should introduce a few new ideas.
"Coach Kelling comes from the UND mode which a lot of our original defense is from, but there will be some new twists. It`s nice going into a first game where they haven`t seen our new coordinator`s schemes on tape yet," said head coach Myron Schulz.
"I think we`re playing a little faster this year. He knows how to use everybody, so I think we`ll be able to play well with him," said junior defensive end John Oyloe.
Something else a little different this season is the schedule. The expansion of the Northern Sun means the Marauders will no longer have a non-conference game to open the season.
"I think it`s good for us cause it`s a game that counts every time, so I think we`re going to come out playing strong," Oyloe said.
First up for U-Mary is a trip to St. Paul to face a Concordia team the Marauders haven`t seen in a couple years.
Schulz, "They`re always a really good team. They draw from the St. Paul/Minneapolis area, so they got a big base around them. They play really good football. They got a great stadium, that Sea Foam Stadium is beautiful. It will be a great match-up for us," Schulz said.
And the first of eleven games in U-Mary`s quest to finish above .500 for the first time since 2007. U-Mary will open up at home next on September 8 against Augustana.
Scott will host the first Marauders Weekly show this Sunday night.