The updated spring roster was released today and while there isn't much to glean from it, that won't stop me from trying...
It seems that changing numbers is the in thing to do for defensive backs. They are the only position players to change their number from last semester (outside of Darrin Bragg that is).
Anthony Vernalgia changed from 42 to 4 while Junior Jabbie went from 37 to 8. Tregg Duerson changed his number from 28 to 24, and Leo Ferrine went from 38 to 15 (haven't they burned that jersey yet?). Darrin Bragg went from 18 to 7 and Terrail Lambert has switched from 34 to 20.
This has been reported previously on various recruiting websites, but the 5th-year eligible players who opted not to return to the team are Marcus Wilson, Darrin Mitchell, Jeff Thompson, Lionel Bolen, and Zachary Giles.
For the most part the listed positions are the exact same as last semester. That makes sense since Weis and Co. haven't actually seen the players on the practice field yet. I still expect guys to move around once spring practice gets going, but for now Brandon Nicolas is still a defensive end, Vernaglia and Ndukwe are both still safeties and Brady Quinn is still a quarterback.
Gone are the Davie days where players were bulked up as much as possible during the offseason. In fact, a quick comparsion between the new roster and the one from last spring shows that most of the players are reporting at a lower weight than before. One exception to that is the wide receiver position where nearly all of the players have gained weight. Most notable in this group is Chris Vaughn who bulked up from 205 to 221. Other big gainers on the team include defensive end Justin Brown who went from 225 to 243 and Mark LeVoir who is up from 310 to 325. Man, I really hope that the 245lb DE from Pitt who was ordered to drop weight lines up across from Mark. Those hoping that weight gain by Vernaglia and Nduwke would tip position changes are out of luck as both are listed at just about the same weight as before.
UND.com already has a bunch of photos up from today's first practice. Among the various coaches' and players' action shots, notice the masking-tape name tags on every helmet. Probably a necessity, but it still made me laugh.