JMU Begins Practice for 2014 Season - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

JMU Begins Practice for 2014 Season

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Vad Lee enters 2014 atop the depth chart at quarterback Vad Lee enters 2014 atop the depth chart at quarterback

JMU began practice Monday.

The players at JMU will have to prove themselves to new head coach Everett Withers.

Withers brings a coaching style that emphasizes a fast pace and up-tempo practice.

The team is starting completely from scratch heading into 2014 according to Withers.

"We use a term, if its working and doing well. Enhance it and make it better. If not. Blow it up, and start over. We felt like we needed to blow it up. Start it over."

Withers is not the only new arrival to Harrisonburg.

Junior transfer quarterback Vad Lee arrived at JMU after starting all 13 games for Georgia Tech in 2013.

Withers talked about how Lee has done transitioning to a new program.

"Vad is obviously coming in right around the same time we all got here. Vad's done an unbelievable job. If you ask people in the community, he's and upstanding young man. He does a nice job of representing JMU."

Lee discussed the new culture coach Withers has instilled in the Dukes.

"We got to earn each and everyday. I come out to practice. I have to earn my spot, and that's everybody on this team...that's the culture that coach Withers set here...its really something that I embrace."

The Dukes are coming off a 6-6 season, and were picked to finish eighth in the conference this year. Coach withers doesn't see a lack of talent on this team. He sees a group of players that just need to practice up-tempo, execute and come ready to play on game-day.

"People always talk about, that you practice like you play. But then they don't execute that way. They say practice like you play. We try to get competitive reps. That means full speed reps. We hit a lot in practice."

Senior offensive tackle Austin Lane says he and the team have high expectations for themselves this season.

"We want to get a conference ring. We definitely want to win the conference, and we feel that our 8th place projected ranking is not where we deserve to be... Its definitely not what this team is capable of, and we're going to prove it in the next couple of weeks."

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