ANNAPOLIS, AUG. 13 -- "Let's go! Move it, move it, move it!"

A familiar sound around the Naval Academy, to be sure. But at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium? On football media day?

With Elliot Uzelac in charge, you better believe it.

Although eminently approachable and wildly enthusiastic, Navy's new coach has no room for wasted time in his program. Even when it comes to organizing the team picture, Uzelac makes no requests of his players and assistants -- he makes demands.

"Once he found out {during the past school year} that we were going to be his temporary active duty assistants, it was like he was at Michigan," said Ensign Vince McBeth, one of several 1987 graduates now serving under Uzelac, who replaced Gary Tranquill last December. "It was like, 'Okay, I want you guys doing this, this and this.' We had to say, 'Coach, we're still midshipmen, we're still in school and we're still under all these restrictions.' It took him a little while to get adjusted."

Make that readjusted. Uzelac, 46, who is going into his 24th season as a football coach, was an assistant at Navy in 1971 and '72. Immediately prior to his return, he worked five years as Bo Schembechler's offensive line coach.

"The last {offensive} tackle I coached was 6-foot-9, 306 pounds," Uzelac said of one difference between Michigan and Navy. "I don't think we're gonna get many of those here at the academy."

Thus, when the Midshipmen (3-8 last year) line up on offense against William and Mary on Saturday, Sept. 12, at home, they will do so in a new formation: the wishbone.

"We can't line up and play power football and pass," Uzelac said. "We have to get the most out of these kids, based on what they have to offer us."

What the Midshipmen have up front, Uzelac said, is less weight and more quickness and strength.

"In the simplest terms, I felt {in the spring} that we were just a little too heavy to play," Uzelac said. "In the wishbone, you don't need great size. You want great strength and quickness on the offensive line. And I think our linemen, except for one, are all in good shape and one out of 27 isn't bad."

Uzelac singled out senior guard Joe Brennan as a product of the Midshipmen's off-season training program, which culminated with about 60 players giving up the last portion of their summer leave in order to work out together at the academy. Brennan, who is 6-4, went from 284 to 261.

Those who will work behind Brennan and company have been hard at work, as well. Senior quarterback John Nobers has busied himself with learning the reads and other techniques necessary for success with the wishbone. Senior running back Chuck Smith (15th in the nation last year in rushing at 103.7 yards per game) has been working on his hamstrings, one of which he pulled last season, the other of which he pulled just before spring practice started.

"Nobody has really played enough to make any kind of a judgment," said defensive coordinator Milan Vooletich, who inherits seven lettermen. "But I think we have quality players who are try-guys that will work hard. And if losing does burn their butts, now's their chance to rectify that situation."