ATLANTA -- Tuesday's rainy weather meant the first chance for the Georgia State football team to practice in the elements.
"Unless there's a lightning delay, we are going to be on the field practicing," head coach Shawn Elliott said as the Panthers continue preparations for their Aug. 31 season opener vs. Tennessee State. The inaugural game at Georgia State Stadium will mark the first time that Georgia State will open the season in an outdoor venue after playing its first seven seasons in a dome.
"We had to come out here and play with some wet balls today and push through it," Elliott continued. "We had a few drops, but you have to focus. You have to have that extra level of concentration when the elements are like this."
Now one week into preseason camp, the Panthers scrimmaged for the first time Tuesday. Even though the execution is far from perfect, Elliott has been pleased with the effort.
"These guys are willing to do anything we ask of them," Elliott said. "We came out here and pushed hard today. We probably went about 160 reps in a two-hour scrimmage. They're working hard. They've got some fight in them, and as long as we have that, we have a chance."
Elliott also had another message for the Panthers after today's scrimmage.
"It's about being confident," he explained. "One play doesn't make a dadgum football game, whether it's a touchdown throw or a minus-yardage run. Whatever it may be, they have to continue to push themselves, so at the end of the game, they know they gave their very, very best.
"Body language is key for our football team," Elliott continued. "I want them to be confident in everything they do. At times today I saw some heads dropped today, after a dropped ball here, a minus-yards run, a couple of missed tackles, and you can't have that. You have to be confident in everything you do, from the first play to the last."
Season and individual game tickets and parking for all six home game at Georgia State Stadium are on sale now.