Brady Blackwell is set to begin his final season in the Scarlet and Gray. A native of Dublin, Ohio, Blackwell played in 18 games with 14 starts in the Buckeye midfield a year ago and was an Academic All-Big Ten selection. We caught up with Blackwell, a fifth-year senior, recently to hear his thoughts on preseason camp starting next week and working with the new coaching staff directed by first-year head coach Brian Maisonneuve.
“This summer was good. It was the second time Parker [Siegfried] and I played for Asheville City in North Carolina. They play in the NPSL and it was awesome. Asheville is a beautiful city. There is a lot of stuff to do outside like hiking. As far as the soccer goes, it was competitive. There were a lot of college guys and the majority of the players were from England.”
“I knew Coach Mais being from Indiana, which has been one of the best soccer programs in the country. When we found out there was going to be a new coach, everyone was excited. He is a well-known name. We met with him once last semester and he talked with us about his expectations and visions. I’ve talked with him a few times over the summer too when I was in North Carolina. Everyone is very excited to work with him, Sergio, Matt and Chad. It’s a great staff and we can’t wait to get to work.”
“I’m super excited for the fall. Obviously it’s my last go-around and I want to make the most of it. There were a lot of changes with the program over the offseason and I think everyone is excited to be back. We will probably get going with a captain’s practice or some optional workouts soon before the team reports. I’m pumped to get back on campus and be with the boys. Everyone is hungry especially after the last two seasons haven’t been what we wanted them to be. Everyone is ready for camp to arrive.”
“Preseason is sneaking up quick. I know a lot of guys have been around campus taking summer classes and working out with Coach Britton. Everyone wants to make sure their fitness is ready come Aug. 7 when the team reports. We have some new guys coming and we were pretty young last year so we just want to build off that and get all the new guys welcomed into the program.”
“I think myself, Parker, who has been our starting goalkeeper for us the last two years, and a couple older guys like Alex Nichols and Michael Prosuk will look to lead this team as camps starts. We have a good core of older guys that have been with the program for the last several years.”
“This preseason right from minute one we need to maximize the time we have. We have a new staff as well as new players. I think that’s the message I will send to the guys. We can’t waste time. Every minute is going to be important because if you look at our schedule, there aren’t any games we can take off. Every match is important. We need to be ready from week one. I’m sure the coaching staff will have a philosophy for the team and the way we want to play. We need to be ready to soak up any information the coaches give us.”