Lindsey and the Trojans begin spring practice

Published 9:37 pm Monday, March 18, 2019

The Chip Lindsey era gets underway this afternoon when the Troy Trojans begin spring practice.

The Trojans are fresh off their third-straight 10-win season and a win in the Dollar General Bowl in Mobile.

Following the season, the Trojans said goodbye to former head coach Neal Brown, who took a job at West Virginia University.

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Under Lindsey, the Trojans will open camp for the first of 15 total practices leading up the annual T-Day game on April 20 at Veterans Memorial Stadium.

“I’m really looking forward to getting out on the field and getting to know our players,” Lindsey said in January. “We’ve been focused hard on closing out the recruiting class, and the staff has been on the road a lot since coming on board.”

The Trojans this spring will be tasked with replacing key figures on both sides of the ball. The Trojans lost three All-Sun Belt receivers after last season in Damion Willis, Deondre Douglas and Sidney Davis. Tray Eafford and new receivers Reggie Todd and Khalil McClain will try to fill in the gaps.

Perhaps the position battle to watch this spring will once again will be at quarterback. After last spring, Kaleb Barker entered the season as the team’s starting quarterback, beating out Sawyer Smith. Barker played in eight games and completed 73 percent of passes and threw 10 touchdowns. During his sixth game against Georgia State, Barker injured his knee and was forced to sit the rest of the season. Smith finished off the season with 1,669 passing yards and 14 touchdown passes.

Both quarterbacks will once again be competing for the starting job this spring. They will be joined by new faces as well. Gunnar Watson, who played in two games last season, will be joined by former Vanderbilt quarterback Jacob Free and freshman Gavin Screws.

“We have to do a great job getting all the quarterbacks some reps,” Lindsey previously said. “At some point, we’re going to have to have a pecking order, but the big thing for us is getting them reps early so we can get a good evaluation.”

The Trojans will return eight defensive players that were All-Sun Belt performers including Freshman All-American Carlton Martial.

The Trojans will hold their first practice today. They will hold a total of three this week, practicing again on Thursday and Saturday.

“This is an opportunity to get a fresh start with some guys and for others to redefine their roles on this team,” Lindsey said. “I’m looking forward to getting on the field and seeing our guys compete.”