Jacksonville State held its final practice of the spring on Thursday and wrapped up preparations for the Gamecocks' annual J-Day Spring Game, which will kick off Saturday at 5 p.m.
The defending Ohio Valley Conference Champion Gamecocks worked for two hours on Burgess-Snow Field on Thursday morning, getting some fundamental work in and their last situational team drills before taking the field for Saturday's Red vs. White scrimmage. Admission is free for all fans.
"We did a lot of team situational-type scrimmage stuff, along with some fundamentals," JSU head coach John Grass said of Thursday's workout. "It was a productive day. We saw some good things. We've really improved a lot since the first day of spring, and that's what you want to see.
The Gamecocks held a draft to split up the roster into two teams, allowing three senior captains to draft each team and their coaches in the team room. Grass said the draft was a fun twist on splitting the teams up that has already gotten his players excited for Saturday's game.
"They're already going back-and-forth about who's going to win.," he added. "It's created a little buzz with them, a little excitement. Hopefully we will have a good crowd."
Grass hopes Saturday will be a fun event for his players, who have been practicing since early March. The annual game will wrap up the team's spring practice, one he says has been good for the upcoming season.
"I want to see our guys have fun," he said. "Anytime you're playing this game, you want to have fun in whatever you do. I want our guys to have fun and compete, and I think we will.
"It's been a really good spring for us. We've had some guys hurt and, I've said this a lot, but it's given some other guys a chance to get some reps with another group. We've really been able to evaluate our football team and build some depth."
The Gamecocks will also hold a Youth Day earlier on Saturday from 2:30-3:30 in the stadium. Registration will begin at 2 p.m. Autographs, games and giveaways are scheduled for the Youth Day.
The Marching Southerners will also be on hand for Saturday night's game.
J-Day Weekend Festivities
Jacksonville State fans will get the opportunity to see the Gamecock football team in action at the J-Day Spring Football Game on Saturday, April 11 at 5 p.m. at Burgess-Snow Field at JSU Stadium.
The annual spring game is a FREE event and there are plenty of fun activities for the entire family.
The timeline for the day includes:
6 p.m. on Friday - JSU Baseball vs Tennessee Tech at Rudy Abbott Field (Free Admission for 18 & under)
7 p.m. on Friday – JSU Soccer vs Troy (JSU Soccer Field)
8 a.m. – College of Nursing RUN/WALK for Your Life 5K
9 a.m. – Spring Preview Day – Stephenson Hall
11 a.m. – Gamecock Volleyball Spring Tournament – Kennamer Hall
12 p.m. - Gamecock Tailgate opens – Come out early and tailgate with your friends and family in the Kennamer Hall lawn
1 p.m. - JSU Baseball vs. Tennessee Tech at Rudy Abbott Field (Free Admission for 18 & under)
2 p.m. - Youth Clinic at Burgess-Snow Field
4 p.m. – JSU Student Tailgate on Dillon Field
4 p.m. – Stadium Club and Stadium Suites open to all suite holders for early admission into the Stadium. (If you plan to use your suite, you must contact Ed Lett (256-452-9794) or Jan Evans (256-782-8499) by Thursday, April 9. Stadium Club will be open to the public at 5 p.m.
4 p.m. – Gates open to the public
4:30 p.m. – The Marching Southerners and JSU Cheerleaders will enter the stadium
5 p.m. – Kickoff of the J-Day Red and White Spring Game
7 p.m. – JSU Drama Present "To Tread Among Serpents"
*Please note that concessions will be open at 4 p.m.
(COURTESY: JSU SPORTS INFORMATION- www.jsugamecocksporrts.com)