Maine football coach Jordan Stevens previews season opener

Black Bears visit Florida International on Saturday at 6:30 p.m.
Published: Aug. 28, 2023 at 4:18 PM EDT
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ORONO, Maine (WABI) - The Black Bears are kicking off the 2023 season in the Sunshine State and are ready for Week 1 against Florida International.

Black Bears visit Florida International on Saturday at 6:30 p.m.
Black Bears visit Florida International on Saturday at 6:30 p.m.(WABI)

“We’ve had a great training camp. We’ve been able to stay relatively healthy, so it’s been really good to be in this position right now. We can start the week off right with all of our personnel, so we’re really looking forward to getting down to Miami on Friday and playing against a great opponent in FIU,” said Jordan Stevens, head coach.

The Panthers are locked in on defense.

“You see them playing in a really confident and aggressive way, especially up front. They have length. The linebackers are physical. They run and tackle. They have guys that can cover down in the secondary. We’re really going to make sure that we can take what they give us, be opportunistic, and really make sure we can stay ahead of the chains and be productive on offense,” said Stevens.

Coach Stevens described what the Maine defense needs to do to have a successful Saturday.

“We’ll need to be sound and be in a position where we can leverage the ball and keep it in front of us. That’s how we’re going to approach the game. We want to be aggressive on each side of the ball,” said Stevens.

It’s another season-opening test against an FBS opponent.

“We are not going to flinch going down to this game. We’re going down there to compete with toughness and discipline. We want to make sure we are in a position in the fourth quarter to win,” said Stevens.

FIU started its season with a 22-17 loss to Louisiana Tech last Saturday.

Saturday’s kickoff between the Black Bears and Panthers is at 6:30 p.m. on ESPN+.