Spring practice is here, but updates are hard to find concerning the team and how the offseason is going. Let's take a look at some of the information that I have found surrounding the team so far in 2016.
Mark Hudspeth has taken over wide receiver duties this season. With Jorge Munoz moving on to the offensive coordinator position and John Simon owning the position for two weeks before leaving for Arizona State, Hudspeth has called his own number when it comes to working with the position this offseason. Between Hudspeth, Munoz, and graduate assistant help, the three of them have worked with them in drills and meetings.
Hudspeth does have experience coaching wide receivers. In 1994, he was the wide receiver/tight end coach for Nicholls State. 15 years later he was the Mississippi State wide receiver/passing game coordinator before taking the head coaching position at UL Lafayette.
The quarterback position has already been discussed as a two-man race between Jordan Davis and Chris Weaver. Hudspeth loves both of their "live arms," but has also said that Dion Ray is improving at the position. As I stated in the past though, it doesn't seem like Ray will last long at the position.
One thing Hudspeth has clearly stated is that he desires a game manager first before game changing ability. This should be evident by the Cajuns finishing 80th or worse in passing yards per game over the last three seasons even though they have won 22 games during that stretch.
The running back position has been really thin with Elijah McGuire playing basketball and Jalen Nixon missing some practice time due to injury, so Darrius Hoggins and Jordan Wright have been taking many of the snaps. At 5'7, 167 pounds, Hoggins can carve out a role in this team's offense, but it won't be the kind of role that is pivotal in getting Elijah going in 2016.
Wright is a player to look hard at because of his size (5'11, 207). As a redshirt freshman, Wright has the potential to impress early and become the next great Hudspeth running back in 2017. One of the positives of moving Jalen Nixon to running back was his size and Wright has that same kind of power running that the team will need to offset Elijah's speed and agility.
On the facilities front, @FootballScoop has tweeted out a few impressive photos of the team's new facilities. For lack of better words, it looks pretty bada**. Take a look below to see what I mean.
New facilities in Lafayette are sweet. Ragin Cajuns are building something special pic.twitter.com/YomzxcLZAe— FootballScoop Staff (@FootballScoop) March 14, 2016
That's all for now, but I would expect a few more story lines to develop between now and April 16 when the team holds their spring football game. Personally, I'm curious to see if there is a big receiver on the roster than can replace Jamal Robinson's big play ability and how the defense looks after finishing 94th in scoring defense (31.8 points per game) this past season.