Following a 2021 season in which a young Rowan football team went just 2-7, the more seasoned and experienced group have come out to 2022 training camp with a vengeance.
The team is bringing back many key players and leaders both on offense and defense, and Head Coach Jay Accorsi has seen noticeable improvements in his team this year compared to last year in training camp.
“We saw it in the spring, a lot of determination, frustration from the fall,” Coach Accorsi said. “Training camp’s been awesome, night and day difference from last year.”
Good vibes are being felt all throughout the Profs’ locker room with the season opener approaching. Returning senior linebacker Mike Mascioli shared his thoughts on the team’s training camp thus far, and the returns are promising for Prof fans.
“We all have a chip on our shoulder,” Mascioli said. “Last year, we were considered to be a young team. Now, I think we’re all seasoned a little bit more, and I think we’re all ready to get back at it and give people a taste of what we’ve been getting these past couple of years.”
The same can be said about returning senior quarterback Mike Husni. His 2021 season ended with him being named to the All-NJAC Second Team Offense, and this offseason, he’s taken the necessary steps to improve even further.
“Just building off of our last game, which the last two years, we ended the season with a victory,” Husni said. “My mentality is the same every year, just trying to get on the same page with the receivers, especially the younger guys.”
For Husni, he enters this season as one of the team captains. While his offense has looked sharp and focused, Husni realizes that he needs to keep an eye on his team and have all hands on deck.
“Offensively, we’re experienced. We’ve pretty much returned everyone,” Husni said. “Offensively it’s been easier to let things play out how they play out, just because we’ve been together for the past two, three years. But obviously sometimes being a leader for the whole team, I have to pay a little bit more attention… But knowing that the offense knows what to do makes it a lot easier.”
With the Profs young talent getting older, the time is now for multiple players to step up and be difference makers this season. Coach Accorsi has quite a few candidates in mind that
“Our three returning captains, Mike Husni, when you have the returning quarterback in the conference… You’re going to be ranked fairly high in pre-season rankings,” Coach Accorsi said. “John Maldonado was a great player for us last year, very productive, he’s back. CJ Barrett is back, the tight end. He’ll be really productive. James Fara, the running back who we had for only a couple of games last year and he was still a first team all conference player. Eddie Jamison really came on in the slot, he’s really improved.”
In terms of the overall goal for this season, there is one common theme coming from the team.
“Our ultimate goal is to win the NJAC [New Jersey Athletic Conference Championship],” Mascioli said. “Nothing short of that. That’s our first goal… Then we can talk about making a run at the National Championship.”
“I always set high expectations… All I wanna do is win,” Husni added. “I don’t care what I have to do. I just want to win games, win the NJAC, and make a playoff run.”
The Profs’ quest for their eighth NJAC title under Coach Accorsi begins on Saturday, September 3, when the team heads to Widener to kick off the 2022 season.
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