The Big Ten has suspended all organized team activities through June 1 due to the coronavirus pandemic, making it nearly impossible for coaches to have access to their teams. But for a new coaching staff learning the intricacies of their players all the while implementing a different system, the ability to become familiar with your teams proves difficult.
“Kind of limited to access. Oh, my goodness. Completely limited to access,” Els said. “Let’s see – I saw one workout in the strength and conditioning, and the rest has just been game film from last year, which hasn’t been a ton.”
Although he recognizes this is a difficult time for coaches everywhere but points out an ongoing issue for the Spartans this offseason. The staff doesn’t know a lot about their guys.
“Everyone in the country is kind of in that boat. Then maybe, special situations for us are that a few of us on the defensive side of the ball were not here previously, so we don’t know a lot about these kids as far as playing abilities,” said Els.
Ross Els unquestionably has the one advantage needed at this stage, Big Ten experience. He coached at Nebraska from 2011-2014 and served one year at Purdue as the defensive coordinator.
Els talked about the most significant benefit his experience offers him.
“I think that’s probably my biggest advantage is I have recruited this area before and again a couple of guys with schemes maybe,” Els says. “I just know what the Big Ten delivers; I mean, physical, smart football. That’s what we play in this league. I’m glad to be back in it, I really am.”
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