FAU Football: Owls prepare for the spring game after training concludes

Spring training ends for the Owls as the spring game starts on Saturday.


Photo courtesy of FAU Athletics.

Richard Pereira, Sports Editor

The final week of spring training for FAU football has ended as the Owls are gearing up for their first spring game since 2019.

Tight ends coach Jon Bills, who is coaching the White team, said that being selected as one of the head coaches for the spring game had mixed emotions involved.

“Obviously, it was a great opportunity I was fired up for that,” Bills said. “I would have liked to have a little bit more of a felt impulse for the team before getting the opportunity, but we’re making the most of it.”

When it came to building the roster, Bills said that starting with the offensive line was the main factor in the way he drafted.

“We wanted to build it in the trenches, so the free agents we signed were the two guys right in the middle, and then we kind of built it from the inside out,” Bills said. “I think our first round of the first four or five offensive picks were all offensive lineman because that’s where the games are won and lost. I know it’s cliché but we are fortunate to have some really good skilled players here as well.”

Leading the way for the Red team is running backs coach Chris Perkins, whose thought process resulted in redshirt sophomore running back Johnny Ford and redshirt sophomore safety Teja Young being his free agents.

“[Johnny] has that [running] ability so I couldn’t pass that up,” Perkins said. “Then you have Teja Young, he’s like a captain and leader on defense. He’s the guy that’s back there that can keep everybody going, keep everybody enthused, and align everybody else so I chose to go that route.”

Ford, who transferred from the University of South Florida after three seasons, feels that he’ll be playing in his backyard now that he’s closer to home.

“Going into the spring game is going to motivate me because my family gets to come see me in my new jersey, so it’s gonna motivate me a lot just seeing them in the stands,” Ford said.

Michael Johnson Sr., who is Bills’s offensive coordinator for the spring game, stated that the gameplan will revolve around executing plays.

“You still want to have the kids come out with confidence, you want to have them still working on fundamentals and techniques, working on base plays,” Johnson said. “It will be about the guys just going out and executing, and having fun.”

Mike Stoops, who is Perkins’s defensive coordinator, believes they have the foundation on who they’re trying to be, building an identity throughout the summer when it arrives.

“Schematically, I think it’ll be very generic, what we put on the field,” Stoops said. “I don’t think there’ll be a lot of diversity in our game plan but still you want to see the players go out, execute, compete, and fundamentally play good football, no matter what we do.”

The spring game will commence at the FAU Football Stadium on March 27 at 3:00 p.m.

Richard Pereira is the Sports Editor for the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet him @Rich26Pereira.