UTC opens spring football practices - WRCBtv.com | Chattanooga News, Weather & Sports

UTC opens spring football practices

Posted: Updated:
CHATTANOOGA, TN (GoMocs.com)---The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga football team began spring football practice Friday on Scrappy Moore Field.  The 2015 Blue & Gold Spring Game is set for Saturday, April 18, and a complete spring practice schedule is listed below. 

SCRIMMAGES OPEN TO THE PUBLIC
The Mocs take part in two scrimmages during spring action.  The first is Saturday, March 28, at Scrappy Moore Field.  Action takes place on the Mocs' practice field while the turf replacement at Finley Stadium finishes.  The second is Friday, April 10, at Finley Stadium.  Both are open to all UTC football fans.  Be sure to check GoMocs.com throughout the spring for any changes in the schedule.


SPRING GAME APRIL 18
Practice concludes with the annual Blue & Gold Spring Game on Saturday, April 18.  Be sure to check GoMocs.com for a specific time.  UTC coaches and staff again host its yearly FREE Kids' Clinic prior to the Spring Game. All youth, middle school and younger, are encouraged to attend the free event.


2015 SPRING PRACTICE SCHEDULE


Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday
          20 21
          Practice 1
3:45 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field

Practice 2
10:00 a.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
  Practice 3
3:45 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
  Practice 4
3:45 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
  Practice 5
3:45 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
Scrimmage 1
2:00 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
29 30 31 1 2 3 4
   Practice 7
3:45 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
   Practice 8
3:45 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
     
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
   Practice 9
3:45 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
   Practice 10
3:45 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
  Scrimmage 2
3:45 p.m.
Finley Stadium
 Practice 12
2:00 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
   Practice 13
3:45 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
   Practice 14
3:45 p.m.
Scrappy Moore
Field
    Spring Game
2:00 p.m.

Finley Stadium

2014 QUICK RECAP
The Mocs put together the most successful season in school history in 2014.  UTC won a school-record 10 games, won a postseason game for the first time and finished with the highest national ranking in school history.  Chattanooga was 10-4 overall and had a perfect 7-0 Southern Conference tally for the first time.  


Chattanooga boasted one of the most dominating defenses in the nation in 2014.  Chattanooga led the SoCon and was No. 4 in the FCS in total defense, allowing just 277.6 yards per game.  UTC gave up 11.4 points per game, another number that led the SoCon and ranked 11th, nationally.

On offense, Chattanooga led the SoCon, and was 20th in the FCS, in scoring at 34.7 points per game.  UTC was also third in the league in rushing offense at 210.8 yards per game.  That number only trailed the two triple offense teams in Wofford and The Citadel. 

Individually, UTC boasted a school-record 21 on the various All-SoCon and SoCon All-Freshman teams.  The Mocs also had five All-Americans, led by senior Davis Tull and junior Jacob Huesman.  Tull was the SoCon Defensive Player of the Year for the third time, while Huesman repeated at the SoCon Offensive Player of the Year.  Head Coach Russ Huesman grabbed his third SoCon Coach of the Year honor. 

LETTERMEN/STARTERS RETURNING/LOST
UTC returns a total of 43 lettermen from the 2014 campaign. There are 19 on the offensive side of the ball and 22 on defense. Two specialists also return for the 2015 season. There are 16 starters back, including seven on offense, seven on defense and two on special teams.  A complete list of starters returning and lost is available on page 11 of the Spring Guide .pdf.   


QUICK NOTES TO KNOW ABOUT THE MOCS
General
• UTC head coach Russ Huesman is entering his seventh season at his alma mater.  He is 41-29 overall and 30-17 in Southern Conference action.  The Mocs only won 37 games total in the 11 years prior to Huesman's arrival.


• UTC finished with a No. 8 national ranking in both the FCS Coaches Poll and The Sports Network Top 25, the two polls recognized by the NCAA.  That is the highest final ranking in school history.   

• The Mocs led the SoCon in home attendance, averaging 10,146 in six games ... UTC hit that mark only four previous times in school history ... three of those in the Russ Huesman era (2009, 2010, 2011).  

Offense
• Junior QB Jacob Huesman finished tied for 11th in the Walter Payton Award voting and was named the SoCon Offensive Player of the Year.  He is the first Moc with 2,000 rushing yards and 4,000 passing yards, topping both milestones against VMI. 


• Sophomore offensive lineman Corey Levin won the Jacobs Blocking Award as the top offensive lineman in the SoCon.  He is just the second Moc in school history to take that honor.

• The Mocs led the SoCon and were No. 20 in the FCS in scoring offense (34.7) ... that is a school record for points per game.

• UTC led the SoCon and was No. 6 in the FCS in Team Passing Efficiency (154.76).  

• UTC was third in the SoCon and No. 12 in the FCS with just 13 sacks allowed all season.  

• Chattanooga led the SoCon and was No. 4 in the FCS in Time of Possession (33:44).

• The Mocs put up 500+ yards of total offense in five games this season ...  2000 was the last time they did it five times in one year.

• Chattanooga had 250+ rushing yards in five games this season, including three that topped the 300-yard mark ... the last time the Mocs ran for 300-plus three times in a season was 1980 ... they did it four times in 1979 and 1977 as a Division I program.

• UTC was No. 16 in the FCS, second in the SoCon, on third down (92/203 - 45.5%).

Defense
• Chattanooga led the SoCon and was No. 4 in the FCS in total defense (277.6 ypg) ... that's the lowest number for the Mocs since giving up 266.4 yards per game in 1985.  


• UTC was No. 2 in the league and No. 3 in the nation in passing yards allowed (153.2).

• After holding five of its last six opponents to less than 20 points, UTC finished No. 11 in the FCS in scoring defense (9.42) ... that's the best number for UTC since 16.4 in 1987. 

• The Mocs led the SoCon in first down defense, allowing 13.6 per game ... that number was 13th, nationally.

• The Mocs led the SoCon with 35 sacks ... 25th in the FCS ... school record.

• Chattanooga also led the league and was No. 23 in the country with 100 TFLs.

• The Mocs held five teams to less than 200 yards of total offense ... the last time UTC did that in a year was 1980. 

Special Teams
• Sophomore Henrique Ribeiro was 16-22 (72.7%) on FGs this season ... he made his first 12 tries ... second longest streak in SoCon history ... led the league in makes and percentage.   


• As a team, the Mocs were second in the SoCon and No. 12 in the FCS in net punting (38.2).

SEASON NO. 108
The Chattanooga Mocs enter their 108th season of football in the fall of 2015.  The University of Chattanooga was founded in 1886 and football began play in 1904.  No teams were fielded in 1917 and 1918 due to World War I.  There was also a two-year hiatus from football action during World War II in 1943 and 1944.  The Mocs have an all-time record of 512-511-35 (.501) and have won 12 conference titles.


IT'S ALL IN THE NAME
On first reference, it is acceptable to refer to us as the “University of Tennessee at Chattanooga”.  After that, we prefer to be called “Chattanooga” or “UTC.”  Our nickname is “Mocs.”


ROSTER, DEPTH CHART AND BREAKDOWNS
An updated roster can be found on pages 8-9 of the .pdf of the game notes.  The depth chart is found on pages 12-13.


NOTES ON THE RANKINGS
Chattanooga's No. 8 final national ranking in both the Sports Network Top-25 and the FCS Coaches Poll is the highest year-end ranking in school history.  It was just the fourth time in school history the Mocs were ranked at the end of the year.  UTC finished the 2013 season ranked in the top 25 of both major polls that are recognized by the NCAA.  The Mocs were No. 23 in The Sports Network Top 25 and No. 25 in the final Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) Coaches poll.  It was the first time Chattanooga was ranked in a season-ending Top 25 since earning a No. 17 spot in the final NCAA Division I-AA Top 20 in 1984.  UTC was also No. 17 in the final 1982 poll, the first year of an official I-AA poll.  UTC has been ranked for 26 weeks in the Russ Huesman era (since 2009).  The Mocs are 14-11 when ranked in the Top 25 since 2010. 


COACH HUESMAN AT A GLANCE
A three-time SoCon Coach of the Year (2009, 2013, 2014), Russ Huesman is 41-29 (.586) in his six years at Chattanooga after being hired as the 22nd head coach at UTC on Dec. 22, 2008.  The Mocs won exactly 37 games in the 11 previous seasons to his arrival in 2009 (37-87).  


Huesman was 10th in the voting for the Eddie Robinson Award for the National Coach of the Year.  He garnered 109 points, including seven first-place nods.  This is the second year in a row Huesman has been a finalist for the Robinson Award, finishing 17th in 2013.

A 1983 graduate of UTC and a former defensive back, Huesman guided Chattanooga to a 6-5 mark in 2009, equaling the number of wins UTC had seen in the previous three years combined.  Huesman is 38-22 against FCS teams with 15 of those losses coming against ranked opponents, including 10 in the top 10.  He is 30-17 (.638) in SoCon action.  The program won 29 league games the previous 12 campaigns to 2009 (29-63).  He is 22-10 (.688) at home, 19-19 (.500) on the road. There were just 17 road wins in the prior 12 years (1997-2008).

Prior to his return to Chattanooga, Huesman spent 25 seasons building a reputation as one of the top defensive-minded assistant coaches in the country. He spent five years as the defensive coordinator at the University of Richmond before joining UTC and also coached at Memphis (1998-2003) and William & Mary (14 yrs), serving as the defensive coordinator from 1996-97. A native of Cincinnati, Ohio, Huesman played prep football at perennial power Moeller High School, where he lettered for four years under head coach Gerry Faust.

TRENDING UNDER HUESMAN
Below are some statistical trends during the Russ Huesman era that began in 2009.  To see where UTC finished in each category, both in the SoCon and nationally in the FCS during Huesman's tenure, see page 14 of the Season Recap pdf.  


• UTC has been among the top 30 in the FCS in Turnover Margin in each of the last four seasons, including tied for 20th at +9 in 2011, 14th at +8 in 2012, T21st at +6  in 2013 and T28th at +6 last season. 

• The Mocs have been in the top 15 in the nation in pass defense in five of the six years of the Huesman era.

• Chattanooga has finished in the top 20 in total defense and scoring defense in the FCS in each of the last four seasons. 

• The Mocs have been in the top 25 for fewest penalty yards in each of the last four seasons. 

• UTC has been in the top 25 in the FCS for net punting in each of the last three years.

• Chattanooga has finished in the top 25 in rushing in each of the last two seasons. 

WINNING RECORDS BECOMING COMMON AT CHATTANOOGA
The 31-13 win against Wofford on Nov. 8 secured UTC's fifth winning record in the six years of the Russ Huesman era.  UTC only had four winning seasons in the 23 years prior to Huesman's arrival in 2009 (1986-2008).


MAJORITY OF THE MOCS ARE FROM TENNESSEE AND GEORGIA
Of the 72 members currently on the Mocs' spring roster, 57 list Tennessee (34) or Georgia (23) as their home state.  That means 79% of the roster is from Tennessee or Georgia, including 47% from Tennessee and 32% from Georgia.  Twelve Mocs are from Alabama, two from Florida and one from New York.  Check out page 10 of the Spring Guide .pdf for a roster breakdown.   


ATTENDANCE IN THE HUESMAN ERA
UTC has seen a dramatic growth in attendance at home football games since the hiring of Russ Huesman in December 2008.  Seven of the Mocs' top-10 crowds in school history have come in the 26 home games of the Huesman era.  Chattanooga is averaging 10,603 fans per game since the start of 2009.  Prior to Huesman's arrival, UTC averaged 5,767 fans per game in the 2008 season.  UTC averaged over 9,500 fans per game in each of his five years. Only once in the previous 12 seasons before Coach Huesman did Chattanooga football have that big of an average.


Powered by Frankly