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News release Weber State opens its 2009 Fall football camp this coming Friday, August 3. It will have been 244 days since the Wildcats walked off the field at Washington-Grizzly Stadium with a bad taste in their mouths after dropping a 24-13 contest to the Grizzlies in the quarterfinals of the NCAA Division I FCS playoffs.
But come Friday, with a sweet taste of a new season on the tongue, the Wildcats look to become the first squad in WSU football history to win back-to-back football championships. The ‘Cat were co-champions in 1965, 1968 and 2008.
"This is where I envisioned this program being when I took the job four years ago," said WSU head football coach, Ron McBride. "The coaches and media in the league don't considered us a bottom half team anymore. All the honors and accolades we have received are a tribute our players, coaches and fans who have worked hard and given generously. Our goal now is to stay at the top and advance in the playoffs. The staff and players now know what it takes to be conference champions, but now we need to get even better to make it to the national championship game."
Per NCAA requirements, the first two practice days are helmet only (Friday/Saturday) and helmet/shoulder pads only on Monday/Tuesday. The first full gear practice session is set for Wednesday, August 12.
The practice field is located on the southwest edge of campus, but there is no longer an entrance on 38th street. The best way is to make a right off of Harrison Blvd. at the first round about light on the front of campus, and stay right. That will swing you around to the practice field located directly north of the high-rise Promontory Dorm tower.
(The groups are RANDOM, no specific group is in either time slot)
Friday Aug 7 Group #1 8:50 - 10:10 am
Group #2 10:30 - 11:50 am
Saturday Aug 8 Group #1 8:50 - 10:10 am
Group #2 10:30 - 11:50 am
Monday Aug 10 Group #1 8:50 - 10:10 am
Group #2 10:30 - 11:50 am
Tuesday Aug 11 Full Team 8:30 - 11:00 am
Wednesday Aug 12 Full Team 8:30 - 11:00 am
Thursday Aug 13 Full Team 8:30 - 11:00 am
Friday Aug 14 Full Team 8:30 - 11:00 am
Saturday Aug 15 SCRIMMAGE 8:30 - 11:00 am
Monday Aug 17 Full Team 8:30 - 11:00 am
Full Team 4:00 - 6:00 pm
Tuesday Aug 18 Full Team 8:30 - 11:00 am
WednesdayAug 19 Full Team 8:30 - 11:00 am
SCRIMMAGE 4:00 - 6:00 pm
Thursday Aug 20 Full Team 8:30 - 11:00 am
Friday Aug 21 Full Team 8:30 - 11:00 am
Full Team 4;00 - 6:00 pm
Saturday Aug 22 SCRIMMAGE 8:30 - 11:00 AM
MONDAY AUG 24 FALL SEMESTER BEGINS
ALL - AMERICA Weber State had SEVEN players named to The Sports Network's 2009 Pre-Season All-America team. TREVYN SMITH (5-9, 210 Sr. RB) and JOSH MORRIS (6-0, 185 Sr. CB) were on the First Team. ... KYLE MUTCHER (6-3, 300 Sr. OC) was on the Second Team. Third Team members included BEAU HADLEY (6-0, 195 Sr. Safety), CAMERON HIGGINS (6-2, 210 Jr. QB) and CODY NAKAMURA (6-2, 240 Sr. TE). ... The Consensus Draft Services MUTCHER on it's First Team, SMITH on it's Second team and HIGGINS, KEVIN LINEHAN (6-3, 245 Sr. DE), MORRIS, NAKAMURA and TIM TOONE (5-10, 175 Sr. WR) on the Honorable Mention list.
Earned First Team All-Big Sky honors in 2008 with 121 total tackles (led the Wildcats), 59 unassisted. ... His FIVE forced fumbles tied with teammate Kevin Linehan, for the second most in a season at Weber State. ... Second on the team in interceptions with four and added two fumble recoveries. ... Named to Th e Sports Network's All-America Third Team for the 2008 season. ... Comes into the 2009 season named to the pre-season All-Big Sky team both as a defensive back and as the league's top Special Teams player as well.
BIG SKY CONFERENCE
This is the 47th season of Big Sky Conference football. The league first began competition in the fall of 1963. Weber State was a charter member of the league and played as an NCAA Division II member until 1978 when NCAA Division I-AA was created which is now NCAA Division I FCS. ... The Wildcats dominated the 2009 Big Sky Conference Pre-Season All-Conference team with 10 players in 11 positions. On offense team (6) were: CAMERON HIGGINS, KYLE MUTCHER, CODY NAKAMURA, J.C.ORAM (6-4, 280 So. OG), SMITH and TOONE. On defense, RYAN EASTMAN (6-0, 270 So. NT), HADLEY, LINEHAN and MORRIS each made the squad. Josh Morris, Kyle Mutcher and Trevyn Smith were unanimous picks by the league's coaches, media and SIDs. Hadley was not only named as a safety, but as the Special Teams Player as well.
As in CAMERON HIGGINS (6-2, 190 Jr. QB). ... Named the 2008 Big Sky Conference Offensive Player of the Year. He completed 305-465 passes for 4,477 yards and 36 touchdowns in 14 games and had a passing efficiency rating of 166.42. ... Higgins was the Big Sky leader in Total Offense (313.07) and Passing Efficiency and was 4th and 3rd, respectively, in NCAA Division I FCS. ... His 4,400 Total Offense and 4,477 Passing yards are both season bests at Weber State, though he did have the benefit of two extra games since playoff game stats now count in game, season and career stats. ... He is now second, behind Jamie Martin (12,287) in career total offense (6,531) and passing (Martin: 12,207 / Higgins: 6,436). Higgins has 53 career TD passes and needs just 35 more to pass Martin in that category at WSU.
COACH RON McBRIDE
Ron McBride begins his 5th season as head coach of the Wildcats and his 17th overall. McBride inked a new four-year extension of his contract last November which will keep the veteran mentor at the WSU helm through the 2012 season. ... McBride comes into the 2009 season with an overall coaching record of 113-85 and a mark of 22-25 with the Wildcats. ... He led the Wildcats to a 10-4 season overall last year and a 7-1 mark in Big Sky play. WSU shared the Big Sky title with Montana. ... For his efforts, McBride was named the 2009 BIG SKY CONFERENCE COACH OF THE YEAR.
The Wildcats had a significant staff changes following the 2008 season. Kevin Clune (Defensive Coordinator), Kevin McGiven (Offensive Coordinator) and Chad Kauha'aha'a (Defensive Line) left as a package to join Gary Anderson's new staff at Utah State. ... Don Eck was then promoted to assistant head coach/offensive coordinator, but he left after Spring practice to take position with the Las Vegas team in the new NFL development league. ... After the trio left for USU, INOKE BRECKTERFIELD was named the new Defensive Line coach. Former BYU quarterback JASON BECK was named Quarterbacks Coach and former Utah and NFL player, ANDRE DYSON, was hired to coach the cornerbacks. ... JAKE COOKUS and COLTON SWAN were named Co-Defensive Coordinators and MATT HAMMER was named Assistant Head Coach. ... In early June, veteran coach TOM FREEMAN was hired by McBride to replace Eck as the offensive coordinator and offensive line coach.
Had played in just 12 career games in his first two seasons and had a modest 10 receptions for 71 yards and no touchdowns. .. Burst on to the scene in 2008 with 48 catches for 729 yards and led the Wildcats with 10 TD catches including three in WSU's 44-7 win over Dixie State. ... Earned First Team All-Big Sky honors in 2008 and named Third Team All-America by The Sporting News. ... Has put 20 pounds of strength and muscle on his frame over the Winter and looks to be even better in 2009 where he was named to the Big Sky pre-season team.
The Wildcats not only had a strong offense in 2008, but the defense held it's own in a traditionally tough offensive minded conference. Weber State ranked 2nd in the Big Sky in Scoring Defense (22.6) and Pass Defense (209.8 ypg). and were a +7 in Turnover Margin with 12 fumble recoveries and 19 interceptions.
The only team to defeat Weber State in Big Sky Conference play last season, handing the ‘Cats a 33-26 setback in Ogden in the last game of the season. ... WSU and EWU square off in Cheney, Washington on Oct. 10. It will be televised on Altitude TV. ... EWU is not eligible for this year's Conference title due to APR issues, but you be sure the Eagles will bent on making life less comfortable for the rest of the Big Sky members and have a strong team back.
It's no longer NCAA Division I-AA but NCAA Division I FCS (Football Championship Subdivision). There 125 teams. Iona dropped football but Old Dominion added the sports. ... There are 14 Division I FCS leagues, eight (Big Sky, Colonial, MEAC, Missouri Valley, Ohio Valley, Patriot Southern and Southland). Next year in 2010, the Big Sky and Northeast Conference champions will get one as well.
The Wildcats had 12 players on the 2008 Big Sky Confrence All-Academic Team. ... BEAU HADLEY was named First Team Academic All-America on the CoSIDA/ESPN The Magazine Academic Team and on the NCAA Division I FCS Athletic Directors Association Academic Team. Hadley carries a perfect 4.00 gpa in Technical Sales into his senior season.
The Wildcats will have 12 players on it's roster from the Aloha State this season. ... Last year, the Wildcats were ahead of the University of Hawai'i, 17-13, at halftime but eventually fell to the Warriors 36-17, but it was a game in which the Wildcats gained much confidence and went on to win eight of the next nine games.
The Wildcats had 19 of them last season, five each by Scott Goodloe and 2009 returner Josh Morris. ... That was a 13 pick-off improvement from the six the ‘Cats had during the 2007 season.
Played in eight games as a sophomore in 2007 but had 25 tackles. ... Emerged at the end of the season as one of the top lock down cornerbacks not only in the Big Sky Conference but in NCAA Division I FCS. .. Had five interceptions and nine pass break ups over the course of the season. Those 14 set a new WSU single season record. ... He went head-to-waist with Cal Poly's 6-6, 220 WR Ramses Barden in the first round FCS playoff game, picking off a pass and helping the Wildcats to a 49-35 road win. ... Morris is on the 2009 BUCK BUCHANAN TROPHY watch list. The Buchanan Trophy is present each season to the outstanding DEFENSIVE player in NCAA Division I FCS.
A fifth-year senior who is expected to be a force and a leader on the Wildcat defensive line. ... Linehan earned First Team All-Big Conference honors in 2008 with 78 tackles, 14.5 tackles for loss (-88 yards) and 10.5 quarterback sacks for -70 yards. ... Linehan comes into the season with 16 career sacks, tied for 6th on the WSU career charts. His 10.5 sacks in 2008 was the fourth best single season effort in Wildcat history. ... Linehan was voted to the 2009 Big Sky pre-season All-Conference team.
Made himself a force on the Wildcat offensive line calling the line signals, along with blocking for Trevyn Smith and protecting Cameron Higgins. ... Named First Team All-Big Sky in 2008. ... Named pre-season First Team All-American by Consensus Draft Services and Phil Steele's 2009 Football Review. ... Named Second Team pre-season All-America by The Sports Network. ... Strong, hard working lineman who never takes a play off in the game or practice.
The Wildcats return 35 lettermen from last year's team, 19 on defense and 14 on offense and two special teams (P/ K). .. Eight players have earned THREE varsity letters (Beau Hadley, Kevin Linehan, Kyle Mutcher, Cody Nak amura, Trevyn Smith, Mike Snoy, Jared Wilcox and Tim Toone. ... The offense has seven starters returning, the defense four and special teams (P/K) two.
Something the Wildcats cut down on, and got more of, in 2008. ... The Wildcats lost just 11 fumbles and threw 13 interceptions for 24 turnovers, but recovered 12 fumbles and had 19 interceptions for 31 take aways for a +7.00 which is a good number.
Weber State will have 90 players reporting to Fall Camp on Monday, the number allowed per NCAA rule in NCAA Division I FCS.
Weber State had a lot of it in 2008. The Wildcats led the Big Sky Conference in Total Offensive yards per game at 487.85 and in scoring at 35.21 point. In Division I FCS, the Wildcats ranked seventh in total offense and 12th in scoring defense.
MIKE SNOY (6-2, 180 Sr. / Layton, Utah) returns for his fourth season. Snoy has been WSU's punter in 36 straight games and has averaged 40.18 yards per kick. His averaged dropped to just over 38 last season, but 24 of his 53 kicks came inside the 50 and most of those were not returned. ... He also kicked off 52 times in 2008 and his average kickoff length was 61.1yards.
The Wildcats look to replace all three starting line backers from a year ago. One of them, J.D. Folsom, (6-3, 240 Sr.) ended up a 7th round draft pick of the Miami Dolphins and was named Second Team All-Big Sky at the strong side position .. Ryan Galovic was a two-year starter at roverback spot and Biff Swan started all 14 games as the middle linebacker.
There are no NCAA Division II or NAIA teams on the Wildcat schedule in 2009. The ‘Cats open the season with back-to-back games at Wyoming (Sept. 5) and Colorado State (Sept. 12). Both teams are members of the NCAA Division I-FBS Mountain West Conference.
The wispy (5-10, 175 Sr.) wide receiver had 84 receptions for 1,525 yards and seven touchdowns in 2008 averaging 108.90 yards per contest to lead the Big Sky Conference. That is the most single receiving yards by a receiver in Big Sky Conference and Weber State history. ... He had 10 catches for 199 yards and one touchdown in WSU's 49-35 FCS first round playoff win at Cal Poly. Toone comes into the 2009 season with 2,498 career receiving yards and 123 receptions. He needs just 425 more yards to become WSU's career yards receiving leader and 84 receptions to become WSU's career leader in that category as well. He already holds the WSU career record for Touchdown Receptions. He currently had 19.
The Wildcats make three appearances on regional television in 2009. The home game on Sept. 19 with Idaho State, and road games Oct. 10 (Eastern Washington) and Oct. 24 (Northern Colorado) will be carried live on ALTITUDE TV out of Denver, Colorado. The Oct. 3 home game vs. Montana State will carried live on MAX MEDIA TV out of Bozeman, Montana and the Oct. 31 game at Montana is being carried live on KPAX-TV out of Missoula.
Weber State is in its 48th year as a four-year institution with just over 21,600 full time students. Dr. Ann Millner serves as president of Weber State and is a member of the 2009-2010 NCAA President's Council.
Since becoming a four-year school in 1962-63, Weber State's all-time football record stands at 244-259-3. .. In the friendly confines of Stewart Stadium, the Wildcats are 149-92-2 and will be looking for the 150th home field victory on Sept. 19 against arch-rival Idaho State. ... The 10 victories in 2008 tied the WSU school record for most in a season. the 1987 team posted a 10-3 mark.
The season opener for the Wildcats. It will be Weber's first visit to Memorial Stadium since the 1999 season when the Cowboys dealt the Wildcats a 41-16 defeat, and the third visit overall. In 1990, Wyoming escaped with a 21-12 win over the Wildcats and a sophomore quarterback named Jamie Martin. ... The Wildcats will also SEE a lot of Wyoming this season. The ‘Cats are set to make THREE BUS trips across I-80 in 2009 traveling to Laramie, Wyoming (Sept. 5), Fort Collins, Colorado (Sept. 12) and Greeley, Colorado (Oct. 24).
Z AS IN RED ZONE ...Where the 2008 Wildcat OFFENSE led the Big Sky Conference scoring 84.7% of the time when getting inside the opponents' 20-yardline. ... The ‘Cats were 50-59 in those opportunities scoring 42 touchdowns (20 rush / 22 pass) and 8-9 in field goal opportunities. ... WSU lost three fumbles, had four interceptions and one series lost on downs inside the 20.