MORGANTOWN - Cleaning out a crowded notebook and a cluttered mind while trying to transition from basketball that means something to football that doesn't.
Then again, it's not as if there's a great sense of urgency involved in 15 spring practices that will be followed by three full months off the field and then another month of practice before the Sept. 3 opener against Marshall.
In fact, West Virginia's spring practice period is laced with so much urgency that the start of it has been delayed two days. Already one of the latest-starting teams in the country, the original start date of Monday has been moved to next Wednesday. For the record, only eight schools hold their first spring practice after WVU, and none have spring games after the weekend the Mountaineers play theirs.
(By the way, coaches can set up their spring practices any way they wish, but I'll be really curious to see if West Virginia backs this thing up a couple of weeks - as was historically the case - the next time they enter the spring without a starting quarterback coming off January foot surgery. There's no question that Geno Smith's issues the past two springs have played a part in scheduling workouts to allow him more time to recover.)
Oh, and this year, instead of what was originally supposed to be a nice, neat Monday-Wednesday-Friday schedule for five consecutive weeks, now the Mountaineers are working out on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday the first three weeks and then Monday, Wednesday Friday the last two, capped by the April 29 Gold-Blue game.
"I think some of it had to do with being able to have time to scrimmage [on Saturdays],'' said Mike Montoro's WVU's director of football communications. "And one of the weekends is the [annual high school] coaches' clinic, so they had to adjust for that.''
As for Smith's status, well, that seems to differ depending upon the source. Smith insists he is ready to practice, but be shocked if he isn't limited just to skeleton drills and hands over any and all contact work to others - true freshmen Brian Athey and Paul Millard and, perhaps, Coley White. That's the way it worked last spring, and unless new offensive coordinator Dana Holgerson becomes quickly and absolutely convinced that one of the freshmen can handle the job, don't expect him to take chances with Smith.
That seems like a silly statement now after the Big East had nine of its record 11 teams eliminated in the first weekend of the NCAA event, but Calhoun is naturally sticking by his guns where the degree of difficulty of the Big East is concerned.
"The bottom line is that I still believe in our league and I don't think that single games make a difference,'' said Calhoun, whose Huskies are one of the two surviving Big East teams, along with Marquette. "The reason we got the notoriety we did is that St. John's absolutely clocks Duke, and then [Duke] goes right through the rest of the schedule. You can't take that away and say they are not doing well in the tournament.