Football Sports

Spring football starts in full swing under head coach Willie Fritz

UH began its first year of spring football under new head coach Willie Fritz Tuesday. | Courtesy of UH Athletics

The Cougars will take to the field for the first time under head coach Willie Fritz in 15 practices scheduled over 34 days. The schedule concludes with the Spring Game at 10 a.m. on Saturday, April 13. 

Senior Quarterback Donovan Smith underwent shoulder surgery in the offseason and will not be fully available during spring ball. 

“He’s further along than I thought he would be at this point,” Fritz said. “We are going to be smart with him.” 

Fritz expects Smith to participate in non-throwing exercises by the end of spring and be cleared to throw by late summer. Likewise, surgery will keep redshirt freshman defensive lineman Justin Benton from taking the field for the Cougars. Wide receiver Samuel Brown missed Tuesday’s practice with an illness, per a UH spokesperson, but is set to return later this week.

UH welcomed 24 mid-year enrollees, 19 of whom possess Division I experience. Additionally, Houston returned 27 letter winners from last season.  

Fritz expects to come out of the spring with a flexible yet established depth chart, built off what the coaching staff observes. 

“Everyone is starting with a clean slate, I’m not going to worry about what happened in the past,” Fritz said. “[I want to be able to say] Hey, here are the guys that showed us they can play Big 12 football.”

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