Arkansas State University System President Dr. Chuck Welch and Director of Athletics Terry Mohajir both visited with the A-State football team the last two days, making them the latest in a line of university and athletics department leaders to address the players as they prepare for the 2013 season and upcoming academic year.
Dr. Welch met with the Red Wolves on Wednesday, conveying his support for the team on the field, encouraging them to remain dedicated to success in the classroom and applauding their efforts to be outstanding ambassadors for the University. Not only has A-State claimed back-to-back Sun Belt Conference titles, it has won the league's Team Academic Award 10 of the last 11 years and is heavily involved with community service projects.
"We appreciate Dr. Welch taking time out of his busy schedule to meet with our team," head coach Bryan Harsin said. "This was a great opportunity for our players to become more familiar with our system president, and, at the same time, hear from someone with tremendous insight who does so much for them and our program."
Mohajir visited with the players this morning during their first team meeting. The Arkansas State University alumnus and former letterman discussed his passion for A-State and his desire to see the players succeed not only on the field, but in life. He congratulated the players for having a committed coaching staff that cares about them as people. Mohajir also commended the players for their hard work in competition, the classroom and the community, while stressing the privilege and responsibility they have to represent A-State as well.
"Terry is obviously heavily involved with our program, coaches and players on a daily basis, so it's important for our players to understand what his expectations are for not only our football team, but also for the entire athletics department," said Harsin. "As a former player here, he knows exactly what our players go through on a daily basis and his message today was another example of how well he relates to their situation as student-athletes."
The Red Wolves, suited out in full pads, held their 16th practice later Thursday afternoon at Liberty Bank Stadium.
"I thought the effort and energy was high today, and really we've been doing a pretty good job on the field for most of camp," said Harsin. "We need to continue to focus on becoming better students of the game and taking advantage of our meetings and time watching film. Those meetings and time in the film room can help us identify things before we go out there and run a play. There are keys that all good football teams have that help them make faster decisions and put them in better positions, and those keys are the things our players must identify in order to be on the same page and make adjustments together."
Season and individual game tickets for the Red Wolves' 2013 football campaign, which includes six home games, are currently on sale and can be ordered by contacting the A-State Box Office at 870-972-ASU1 or 1-888-ASU-FANS (278-3267) or by visiting AStateRedWolves.com. For more information, contact A-State Athletics Marketing at 870-972-3880.