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Marshall linebacker Domenick Murphy eyes the offensive backfield as the Herd runs through a play during spring drills last week. Head coach Charles Huff said progress has been made through six practices, but the team still has a long way to go to meet his expectations.

HUNTINGTON — Marshall football coach Charles Huff is not one for coachspeak.

Huff speaks as his teams play — open, free, intense.

Therefore, it was no surprise when Huff was direct when speaking about his team’s status through six spring practices on Wednesday afternoon.

“We have a long way to go,” Huff said. “I’m not one of these coaches that’s going to get up here and tell you everything is great. We are not at the level of consistency in performance that I would like to be.”

That doesn’t mean that all is doom and gloom for the Thundering Herd’s new leader, though.

Huff sees the players’ ability, but gaining consistency is paramount to the team’s success.

And for Huff, success is predicated on one thing: championships.

“There are some bright spots, there are some guys making some plays, there are guys that are standing out, but the consistency level in order to be a champion is not there yet,” Huff said.

Huff said building that champion pedigree is a daily process built on hard work and precision under pressure.

“It’s one thing to play hard, it’s one thing to play with really good effort, but execution and consistency win football games,” Huff said. “That’s the step that we are constantly trying to make with each and every position group, each and every player.”

One of the first steps of getting the most out of spring practice was having the players buy in to what the coaching staff is looking to accomplish, which Huff said was a welcome change in dynamic for them.

“The players’ work ethic and attitude has been great,” Huff said. “They are learning how to practice, learning how to study, learning how to compete the way that my staff and I are setting the foundation for them.”

With this being the first spring session in two years, Huff said maximizing the 15 sessions is vital to be ready for the upcoming season.

Also, the unknowns associated with spring practice in the COVID-19 era mean there’s really no time to spare.

“We are on a good path, but we are running out of time is what I told them,” Huff said. “The NCAA allows us 15 of these opportunities, so we’ve got to maximize every one. I said to the team [Tuesday], we’re living in a day and age that we don’t know what this virus will allow us to do tomorrow, so we have to maximize the time we do have and we can’t waste today.”

Huff and the Herd get back to work on Thursday in practice No. 7 of a scheduled 15 for the spring, which culminates with the annual Spring Game on April 17.

While the team is not ready to take on the fall yet, Huff said he’s eager to see the strides that can be made by his players leading up to that April 17 finale.

“We are not where we need to be, we are not where we will be, but we are making progress,” Huff said.