The Monmouth University football team is getting ready for the program’s 25th anniversary season with the opener a little more than three weeks away when the Hawks host Lafayette on Saturday, September 2 (3 p.m.) at the newly-renovated Kessler Stadium. Today (Monday) was Media Day with the Hawks holding their first full-contact practice in pads before several players and head coach Kevin Callahan with the media afterward.

Callahan is the only head coach in program history and I sat down with him as he gets ready for a season that includes plenty of new faces and most importantly the type of facility that likely only seemed like a dream a quarter-century ago.

The Hawks are coming off a disappointing 4-7 season during which they went winless in the Big South Conference. However with returning standouts like preseason All-America safety Mike Basile (Brick Memorial) and preseason All-Conference selections Reggie White Jr. (WR), Alex Thompson (OL) and Jake Powell (TE) optimism is running high that Monmouth will be a factor in what appears to be a wide open Big South.

All Hawks road games can be heard on the Shore Sports Network’s 1160/1310AM and streamed live at www.shoresportsnetwork.com.