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Red Wolves to debut Saturday

Spring game begins Malzahn era

Published: Thursday, April 12, 2012

Updated: Thursday, April 12, 2012 14:04

spring practice

Alejandra Hernandez/Herald

Arkansas State players observe drills during a spring practice session at ASU stadium.

After weeks of closed practices, the 2012 Arkansas State Red Wolves football team will make their eagerly anticipated debut this Saturday in the annual Spring Game.

Fans will finally get at a glimpse at what first-year head coach, Gus Malzahn, has in store for a program that went 10-3 last season and earned a spot in the GoDaddy.com Bowl.

The spring practice will begin at 1 p.m. at ASU Stadium.

While it is a full-length practice session, Malzahn said the event will be something for Arkansas State fans to enjoy.

“We’ll try to make it as game-like as possible with our players and play four quarters of football and have a halftime.“

Malzahn also instituted an entrance charge of $5 for non-students and fans above the age of 12, for the first time at an ASU spring game.

Malzahn said the reasoning for the institution of the charge is to benefit players and supplement costs in an athletic program that ranked last in the Football Bowl Subdivision in terms of funding last season.

With the charge, Arkansas State joins a short list of schools that charge for admittance to their spring games, including Texas A&M, Wisconsin, Oklahoma and Malzahn’s previous school, Auburn.

At least 400 potential ASU recruits will be in attendance at the event, also acting as the school’s Junior Day.

Malzahn said the “family atmosphere” the team gives off has impressed many recruits who have visited campus.

The school is going to great lengths to bring that atmosphere to the game Saturday with activities before and after.

The first 500 students at the stadium will receive a free Gus Malzahn t-shirt, and the band, Heading South, will begin performing at 11 a.m.

Fans will be able to receive autographs from players and coaches following the game.

 

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