BY JEREMY SCHILLING
WEST LONG BRANCH - On many football teams, your leader is your quarterback. If not the quarterback, then the captains. But for Monmouth football, they have neither, as graduation has produced a remaining core that has a lot of game experience but not a lot of time in positions of authority.
That void would, as spring practice begins, would seem to be one of biggest questions the Hawks need to find an answer to.
But a surprising thing happened on the way to practice, according to senior (come fall) defensive back Joe Johnson, and arguably the guy with the most experience on the team: people stepped up during the offseason workout program.
“It was really interesting this year,” Johnson said at the start of spring practice last week. “I feel like, in years past, a lot of times it took a little bit of time to get going as the younger guys hadn’t experienced it before. I feel like this year it was different because so many of the younger guys had on-field experience and they were ready to go. They wanted to work. So the older guys were pushed by the younger guys this year, so there wasn’t any lull. We didn’t have to pick everybody up to speed. Everybody was ready to go from day one.”