Leon Kinnard led the CAA in punt return average last season.
Courtesy: Brendan Cavanaugh
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Leon Kinnard led the CAA in punt return average last season.
| @Towson_FB Has High Hopes For Special Teams
Courtesy: Athletics Media Relations  
Release: 04/16/2013

TOWSON, Md. - With the Tiger football team entering the second half of its spring season, more time is being devoted to special teams.

Over the last two seasons, part of the Tigers' improvement can be attributed to special teams. In each of the last two years, Derrick Joseph has had a kickoff return for a touchdown. Last year, Leon Kinnard led the CAA in punt return average.

All of these facts make Joe Tricario, the new special teams coach, even happier to coach the Tigers.

A veteran of nearly 30 years of coaching on the college and professional levels, the New York City native expects to build on the team's success.

"There are a number of very good special teams players here already," says Tricario. "My philosophy is to keep the schemes simple and make sure that we are fundamentally sound and technically sound."

Widely considered an expert on coaching special teams, Tricario got his start coaching special teams at Albany where he was a graduate assistant. He recalls, "Bob Ford wanted all of his coaches to have an area of specialization and he gave me special teams. When I went to the World League (WLAF), the head coach of the Montreal Machine liked to focus on special teams and that lit the fire under me. He showed me how important they were."

While the new Tiger special teams coach is still getting to know the players on the Tigers' roster, he has seen plenty of talent.

"For the most part, the nucleus of our special teams is already here," he says. "We've got some talented people with speed and it's great to have some return specialists who have plenty of experience with the ball in their hands.

"They have done a great job with special teams at Towson the last few years," he added. "That is why we've been successful. Now we will be trying to build on that success."

In addition to coaching the Tiger special teams, Tricario will also be coaching the Tigers' secondary and he sees that as an advantage.

"Many of the best special teams players are defensive backs," he says. "It's an easy blend and I'm looking forward to working with them."

The Tigers return to the practice field on Thursday morning at 5:30 a.m.

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