Much of Colorado State’s spring workouts will deal with how the players learn the new system. For the most part, the staff Jim McElwain hired had time to come in and look over tape of the Rams who played last year and get an idea of who and what they had to work with.
Then there’s Greg Lupfer. He wasn’t hired until March 20, the eve of the first spring practice. In other words, he’s playing catch-up as much as the guys he’s leading in practice.
“Well, thank God I’m coaching the defensive line, because schematically, there’s not as much to it as obviously the linebackers and secondary,” said Lupfer, who has spent 11 years as a defensive coordinator. “I’d say we’re 50-50 right now between me and the players. It’s a lot to learn in a little bit of time. We’ve just got to continue to get better.”
In some ways, Lupfer said he’s glad he didn’t have time to scour over tape. What he sees is what he knows and will not be skewed by any outside variables. His linemen will have to impress him on what they do from here on out, not what he thinks they’ve done in the past. He feels the program as a whole is working under those guidelines.
“My thing is this: What they did in the past, that’s the past, and I’m trying to look towards the future, like everybody else is doing here,” Lupfer said. “My thing is let’s go out and everybody start with a fresh slate.”
For Lupfer, there really was no other option.