Here is a question-and-answer swap I did with Ryan Autullo, who covers the Toledo Rockets football team for the Toledo Blade.
First are answers to my questions for Autullo, followed by Autullo’s answers to my questions.
1. What are some of the major changes with the program with new coach Matt Campbell compared to past years with Tim Beckman?
This is my first year on the beat, so I am probably not qualified to answer this question. I’ll try anyway. Campbell, who was Beckman’s offensive coordinator, mirrors his former boss in some of the ways he runs the program. For instance, he doesn’t let freshmen or first-year players speak to the media, and he prohibits media from watching practices. From a fan standpoint, I understand none of that matters, but it sort of illustrates how Campbell, at 32 and in his first head coaching position, is not above looking at blueprints created by others. As far as schemes, not much has changed. Campbell was the offensive coordinator under Beckman, so we’re still seeing the spread attack. The 4-3 defense has been modified slightly under new coordinator Tom Matukewicz, whom Campbell plucked from rival Northern Illinois. Beckman preached accountability and discipline, and I think those are tenets of Campbell as well. I sense Campbell is more of a player’s coach than Beckman, which is neither a good or bad thing.