FORT COLLINS, Colo. — It’s a new era for Colorado State football.
Head coach Jay Norvell was on the field Tuesday morning for the first time leading the Rams, as CSU completed its first of 15 spring practices.
"For us, it’s the best time of year," Norvell said with a smile. "We’ll build a foundation in these 15 practices that will stick with us the whole season."
Norvell’s style, especially offensively, is a change from that of previous coaching staffs, and the players said they felt those changes immediately.
"Yeah, there is a difference,” wide receiver Ty McCullouch said with quite the laugh. "These guys love to throw, and us as receivers love that. It’s pretty fun. I’m not gonna lie."
Rams defensive back Jack Howell echoed that same sentiment.
"There’s a lot of juice," Howell said. "I’m not saying there wasn’t juice on the old staff, but I just love the positive energy and the juice that everyone’s bringing out. It’s a great environment to be in."
PHOTOS | CSU football begins spring practice under new coach Jay Norvell
Some of the players on the Rams' roster have endured three separate head coaching changes. Linebacker Dequan Jackson was asked if it’s been frustrating having to keep learning new systems.
"I would say it is kind of frustrating but like you said, I’m learning. I can put that on my resume," Jackson laughed. "I’ve learned three playbooks. I’ve learned three playbooks out here so I’m not going to complain."
At practice, Norvell was sporting a blue collar button-down shirt. He says he’s been doing it for years and he wants to show his new team that they need to bring a blue collar work like mentality to practice every single day.
"In our business, the rent isn’t paid at the end of the month. We have to pay the rent every day," Norvell said.
"We have to do that by having a great practice and doing things the right way. Just like we’re working in the car shop. We just come to work and put a full day’s work in at practice. It’s just a reminder to me that we’re going to work and a reminder to the players that we (have to) get our work done."
Norvell is quickly changing the Rams culture and the players can sense that shift.
"I already like coach Norvell," tight end Gary Williams said. "I love his vibe. I love the energy. I really like him."
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