Entering second year, LU's Smith remains optimistic about future
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. —
There's one main goal for every college football team --- from the Alabama Crimson Tide to the Lincoln Blue Tigers --- in every spring scrimmage.
Don't get hurt.
The similarities end there.
While schools like Alabama and Clemson are putting another coat of polish on a basically-finished product, teams like Lincoln and Kansas are looking for an identity, a plan, and for players who can help make their teams relevant on Saturdays this fall.
"We've had ups this spring, we've had some downs, but everything's been going pretty good," said second-year Lincoln coach Steven Smith, whose team will conclude spring workouts with the annual Blue and White scrimmage at 2 p.m. Saturday at Dwight T. Reed Stadium.
"We still have a long way to go, but I'm seeing some improvement. Both sides of the ball have been very competitive and I've been pleased with the physicality of the team. Now, I want us to become mentally strong and not make the mistakes on Saturday.
"Hopefully, we'll put on a good show.
There's a lot at stake Saturday, which starts with an 11 a.m. tailgate on the softball field parking lot.
More accurately, there's a lot at steak.
"We're calling this the steak and hot dog game --- the winners get steaks and the losers get hot dogs," Smith said. "And I don't think anybody wants a hot dog ... I think it's going to be really interesting to seehow it plays out."
Smith had lofty --- if not unrealistic --- expectations in his first year. He talked about winning a national championship at a school that hasn't even had a winning season since 1972.
No national championship. Instead, Blue Tigers won one game and finished 1-9. But the community support, Smith said, has not wavered.
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