It is a transition year in many ways for UW-La Crosse football.
The obvious one is a new coach. But also Mike Schmidt is installing a new defense.
The Eagles switching from a 3-4 to a 4-3 front this season. UW-L was second to last in the league last year against the run giving up 222 yards a game.
So they're hoping the change will cure some of those woes. It's not an easy transition but the players are already noticing the benefits.
"Bringing in Coach Schmidt and his new ideas for the 4-3 have really helped us. We're still learning a few things and getting the kinks out too. But, the run fits are starting to slow down for us. We're starting to put things together and starting to look like a ball club," said linebacker Noah Risch.
"You can see the change. People attacking the ball better, better running lanes, better gaps for linebackers to run through. It's definitely a big change but I think a much needed change," said outside linebacker Michael Garvey.
The Eagles will have a better idea of how far along they are on defense when they travel to Loras for a scrimmage this Saturday.