Florida Atlantic Football Coach Charlie Partridge met with the media today in what will serve as the last official press conference for the regular season. After two weeks of spirited performances which included taking Florida into overtime, and a 33-31 win over old Dominion, here's what he had to offer in forward looking fashion.
First off, with the ODU game. It was a really complete first half until the last 0:55 of the second quarter. There were a lot of good things to build on. They hit a couple of plays on us at the end of the second quarter and then their third quarter – they did a great job. They took advantage of a couple of things. They did a nice job of checking based on what coverage we were in. We were able to readjust through the course of the second half and find a way to win the game and we are happy with that.
Now our freshmen are sophomores. Our sophomore are juniors. Juniors are seniors. There were even kids that I asked going down the aisle on the way home, ‘did you feel it’? They said ‘what’ I said ‘did you feel the redshirt just come off?’ I got some smiles from that. So we are already in the mode. We had a team meeting this morning. They moved their seats up based on class, because that is how our auditorium is setup. They get the feel of resetting themselves as leaders and working their way up to upperclassmen.
I’m proud that (Dalton) Schomp ended the regular season the No. 1 punter in the country. We led Conference USA in sacks and were No. 14 in the country. (Trey) Hendrickson was third in the country in sacks and second in the country in forced fumbles. And then as you look at our team, depth is going to help us play four quarters in 2016. I have mentioned it before, but our strongest position group in their performance and the group that took over the game in the fourth quarter on Saturday is the group with the most depth in quality players and that is our defensive line. So, as we continue to build that quality depth throughout the roster, you are going to see performances that go deep into games.
Full focus the next two weeks is on recruiting. This weekend we have somewhere between 10 and 15 recruits that will be here on official visits. Obviously, by rule I can’t talk about who those kids are.
Ronnie Scott, Devin Santana and Chandler Dexter are great kids that are leaving in good academic standing. They worked really hard for us. They are looking to transfer to FCS schools in the spring. So they have a release from us to do that and we are helping make contact on their behalf. All good kids they just want to get on the field as fast as they can and they leave here in good standing so we are going to do everything we can to help them find a home.
Are you sad the season is over?
I am. Because I see us getting better. I really do. It would be fun to see where we could keep going. But, at the same time I am excited to let the bodies heal. We had a number of kids – Kelly Parfitt played banged up. Kids do all across the country but Kellie Parfitt and Trey Hendrickson was banged up and produced the way he has produced. I can name a bunch of kids. So we need the time to heal. We really do but at the same time it is exciting to see where we were going and how much better we were getting.
The Owls will begin Spring Practice on March 15th in preparation for their 2016 Season opener against Southern Illinois on September 3rd at FAU Stadium.