After Florida A&M’s intrasquad spring football scrimmage at Bragg Memorial Stadium on Saturday, the Rattlers’ orange team pulled out a 31-26 victory over the green team.
“The game was a high scoring affair, giving the defense a lot of credit to who took a healthy lead and showed a lot of promise going forward,” head coach Earl Holmes said. “We will improve, and this is a stepping stone to go on to do great things.”
Throughout the game, the green team played offense and the orange team played defense, featuring the starting defense against the starting offense while alternating between backups.
According to Holmes, this year’s scrimmage had a system that distributed points based on effective offensive and defensive play, giving the defense an opportunity to actually prove their play.
“We had 15 days to prepare, and it’s basically the defensive coordinator against the offensive coordinator going against each other, and it was competitive,” Holmes said. “It was a pretty good game, and everybody was going at each other, and we are doing some great things.”
Holmes said the ability for both teams to make adjustments on the fly was impressive. Those in attendance had an opportunity to see the new offensive plays and defensive schemes the Rattlers plan to incorporate in the upcoming season.
Alexis Brown, a senior business administration student, enjoyed what she saw. Brown said she is expecting a lot from the football team in the fall.
“I love football, and I play on the weekends, but I thought today’s scrimmage was a good measuring tool of how far the school came from the beginning of training camp until now,” Brown said.
Many fans were impressed by the high scoring game and believe this can only mean great things for the future.
“This game had 57 overall net points on both teams combined, which is a great sign for an improving defense,” said Donnell Redman, a senior business administration student. “This new and improved defense seems to be quicker to the ball and more aggressive. I noticed that in the first half.”
In addition to the coaches and fans, players were also satisfied with the level of play in the scrimmage.
Lonnie Lockett, a running back for the Rattlers, said offense, defense and special teams all showed promise for a great fall season.
“The game was a great stepping stone in our transition towards the 2013 season,” Lockett said. “Promise was shown by Rattlers both new and old. By the spring game being the final evaluation for the coaches on major decisions such as the offering of scholarships, roster spots and, ultimately, the cutting of players, everyone did their part in making this decision a difficult one.”
The Rattlers will continue to practice during the summer and fall to prepare for the upcoming season. They will open the regular season Sept. 1 against the Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils in the MEAC-SWAC Challenge at the Florida Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Fla.