You can already hear the “unfair!” yelling about this.
While UConn and Coastal Carolina finished their springs, more than two-fifths of the FBS (52 teams) didn’t even start theirs. Of the 130 teams, a whopping 111 of them didn’t reach the halfway point in their allotted 14 spring practices (excluding a 15th—the spring game). Eight schools each in both the Big Ten and SEC never got to Day 1. In fact, if your team completed four or more practices, it was ahead of the nationwide average of three.
The playing field isn’t quite even. Bluebloods like Clemson and Stanford got in nine and seven practices, respectively, while Alabama and Texas got zero. Entire states never kicked off spring. In Mississippi, Ole Miss, Mississippi State and Southern Miss didn’t have a single day of practice. In Florida, a state with seven FBS schools, just 12 days of spring practice were had. In the football hungry state of Alabama, the only FBS team to have at least one spring practice was UAB. It had six.
Some will take advantage if the summer presents different opportunities for them.
… Because states will reopen at different times, schools will be on different timelines on a return to campus for pre-camp training. “Does the NCAA mandate when everybody can come back and start?” asks Chadwell. “Our state of South Carolina, we’re going to open up some soon. Does that allow our teams, Clemson or South Carolina, to bring back our players in June? That’s going to be an interesting piece.”
Then, there’s Herm Edwards.
At Arizona State, Herm Edwards got seven practices, the second-most of any Power 5 team, but he says spring ball is somewhat overblown. “Even the practices we had, it ain’t going to matter,” Edwards says. “By the time you come back, you missed three to four months, and you’re starting over. Coaches are always about practice, always on this practice deal. I get it, but in the end, what coaches want the most is we all have the same amount of time.”
Would that mean giving teams that had no spring practice extra time when things get back to normal, whatever that is? My bet is that won’t be practical, but the whining is going to be intense, no doubt.