By Scott Creer
LaVell Edwards pacing the sidelines can mean only one thing – football season.
The only difference this time is Edwards is now a spectator as BYU begins preparations for the 2001 season.
The Cougars began official practices in the cold rain Saturday morning under the leadership of new head coach Gary Crowton.
“We”ve got a lot of work to do,” Crowton said. “It was fun to be out there.”
Crowton has a lot to concentrate on at the start of spring practice. The Cougars are installing a brand-new offensive scheme for next year”s season.
Along with the offensive adjustments, Crowton is working hard to remember all the names of his Cougars.
“My main focus is to get to know the team,” Crowton said.
With a new coach comes a new coaching style. Crowton”s hands-on approach was evident as he and his staff got right on the playing field with the players.
“I”m just doing it the way I know how,” Crowton said.
Coming into spring practice, there doesn”t appear to be a quarterback controversy as Crowton has tabbed Brandon Doman as his starter.
Doman”s late-season heroics, including engineering the last-minute game-winning drive against Utah, earned him the starting nod over Charlie Peterson.
Last year”s opening game starter, Bret Engemann, is still recovering from a shoulder injury and is not expected to practice extensively this spring.
Doman is excited to be No. 1 on the QB depth chart, but knows he needs to continue to improve this spring.
“I have a lot I need to do to get better at,” Doman said.
In high school, Doman excelled on the field as an option quarterback. This spring, he hopes to improve his passing accuracy to adjust to Crowton”s new offense.
“We”re going to be throwing the ball a bunch,” Doman said.
Doman is a fan of the hands-on approach by Crowton and his staff, and hopes to learn all he can from the new coach.
“It”s fun to have him right there,” Doman said. “It”s very fast-paced.”
BYU will continue practicing for the rest of the month. Crowton plans to practice three or four times a week for the next four weeks.
The spring practice schedule concludes with the annual Blue/White scrimmage on April 7. The intra-squad game will be at noon and will be open to the public.