GREENSBORO, North Carolina  -   The 2012 North Carolina A&T football season starts in 31 days. The Aggies will have to take a few more preparatory steps before traveling to Conway, S.C., to face Coastal Carolina on Saturday, Sept. 1 at 6 p.m.

The Aggie football players will report to preseason camp on Friday, Aug. 3. Their first official practice will be Saturday, Aug. 4 at 4 p.m. On Sunday, Aug. 12, the Aggies will hold a picture/media day at 9 a.m., inside Aggie Stadium. Six days later on Aug. 18, the Aggies annual Fun Fest Day to kickoff the 2012 season will start at 10 a.m., at the Aggie Stadium parking lot.

"We're looking forward to it," said second-year A&T head coach Rod Broadway. "We're excited. Hopefully, we can make improvements as a football team and get better. That's the key, constant improvement."

The Aggies had a four-win improvement from 2010 to 2011, as they went 5-6 overall and 4-4 in the MEAC. The progress is starting to be recognized.

Senior running back Mike Mayhew was recently named preseason MEAC Offensive Player of the Year and the Aggies return 10 starters from a defense that was ranked eighth nationally. Three of those starters on defense - senior defensive end Tony Mashburn, junior strong safety Travis Crosby and junior linebacker D'Vonte Grant - joined Mayhew on the preseason All-MEAC team. Junior right guard Nathan Isles and senior defensive tackle Brandon Young were preseason second teamers.

A few milestones reached could also signal growth for the Aggies football program. Mayhew is 139 yards shy of breaking the school's all-time rushing record. He could also join Hampton's Alonzo Coleman and Howard's Harvey Reed as the only backs in MEAC history to record three straight 1,000 yard seasons. In addition, quarterback Lewis Kindle has a chance to become the only quarterback in school history to throw for more than 2,000 yards in consecutive seasons.

"I think everyone gets excited at the start of a new season," said Broadway. "It's our job as coaches to hold that excitement. If you hold it, they can see themselves getting better. Hopefully, that translates into us winning some football games. I think we have a core group of guys who understand how we want to get things done. Guys are really putting forth the effort and going for it."

Preseason Schedule
Date                                       Event                                     Time
August 3                                Players Report                     All Day
August 4                                Practice                                 4 p.m.  
August 5                                Practice                                 7 p.m.
August 6                                Practice                                 9 a.m.
August 7                                Practice                                 9 a.m.
August 8                                Practice                                 9 a.m.
August 9                                Practice                         9 a.m. and 7 p.m.
August 10                              Practice                                 9 a.m.
August 11                              Practice                          9 a.m. and 7 p.m.
August 12                              Media/Picture Day                  9 a.m.
August 13                              Practice                                 9 a.m.
August 14                              Practice                         9 a.m. and 7 p.m.
August 18                              Fun Fest                                10 a.m.