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Countdown to Kickoff: Liberty Bounces Back With Solid Two-A-Day Friday

August 10, 2007
|  Lynchburg, Va.
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Brock Smith calls out the signals from the shotgun in a two-minute drill session during Friday afternoon’s practice.

Brock Smith calls out the signals from the shotgun in a two-minute drill session during Friday afternoon's practice.

2007 Countdown to Kickoff Central

Despite practicing twice as much on Friday, the Flames showed dramatic improvement during a pair of practice sessions in the second two-a-day practice of the week.

Yesterday, head coach Danny Rocco was a bit disappointed with his squad's effort, but the second-year skipper was much more pleased with the team today.

"Today was a much better practice," reflected Rocco. "We challenged the team last night to come out and be more focused and execute better. They responded to the charge, and I was pleased with the effort."

During the morning session, which was held on the turf at Williams Stadium, the Flames caught a break from the sweltering heat, which has blanketed much of the country for days. Rocco termed the conditions during the two-hour workout as "pleasant, the best we have had in days."

Liberty took advantage of the temperature change with a very physical practice, emphasizing the squad's ground attack. The Flames worked heavily on their run offense and defense, implementing their second base front package.

The Flames' defensive unit excelled during the drills, which was encouraging to Rocco and his staff.

Liberty transitioned to its new grass practice field for the afternoon practice session, working predominantly on third-down situations. The Flames also spent time on their passing game and sub defense, while concluding the session by brushing up on their two-minute drills.

"I think we are right on schedule with regards to our installations," added Rocco. "Today's practice was good, and if we can have another solid day tomorrow, we will be right where I want us to be."

The Flames conclude their ninth-straight day of practice tomorrow afternoon with a 2:20 practice, which is scheduled to wrap up at 5 p.m. Liberty's players will get a much-needed break on Sunday, with the day off before a returning to training camp, where they will hold their second scrimmage on Monday.

LibertyFlames.com will run two features over the weekend as part of its Countdown to Kickoff campaign, including a ticket sales update and a sit-down interview with linebackers coach Robert Wimberly.

Flames Facts from Practice:
• The sixth and final luxury suite arrived early Friday morning at Williams Stadium. Suites assembly is scheduled to begin on Monday.
• Season ticket sales commercials have been cropping up around the greater Lynchburg television airways of late. The Athletics Department is running over 2,000 commercial spots on Comcast, Jet Broadband, WSET, WDRL and the Liberty Channel during the month of August.
• Each of the commercial spots can be viewed by clicking on the Multimedia tab at the top of this web page, or by clicking here.
• Construction projects around Williams Stadium continue, including a new ticket booth at the South Gate and the repainting of the Premium seats at the 50-yard line.

Liberty University's maintenance crews work to refurbish the Flames' Premium seating areas with a sharp coat of blue paint.

Catch a glimpse of the Premium seats, comparing the new coat of Liberty blue paint to the older, faded seats.

The Flames take a break from the run-oriented morning practice to brush up on their punt coverage.

Liberty's quarterbacks work on a passing drill with passing game coordinator Brandon Streeter, while the punt unit practices on the other side of the field.

The final two sections of the sixth luxury suite arrived early Friday morning in time for installation to begin on Monday.

Assistant athletic trainer Scott Lawrenson and a student athletic trainer prepare tubs to cool the players down, following the afternoon practice session, which returned to 90-plus degree temperatures.

Freshman quarterback Mike Brown takes a snap as part of the second-team offense during the Flames' late two-minute drills.

Wide receiver Matt Lambros gets position on his defender as he attempts to catch the final pass of the afternoon's practice.

Matt Lambros is mobbed by his teammates after the wide out ended the practice on a high note, catching a touchdown pass from Mike Brown.

Construction continues on the Flames' new ticket booth at the South Gate.