Michigan Wolverines hold first football practice in Italy

Pope Francis is presented with a football helmet by Michigan football team coach Jim Harbaugh, back right, during the weekly general audience at the Vatican, Wednesday. (AP photo)

ROME (AP) — After a week of touring Rome, shooting each other with paintballs, hanging out at the beach, snapping photos inside the Colosseum and seeing the pope, Michigan got back to work Thursday.

Jim Harbaugh and the Wolverines held the first of three practices in Italy at Olympic Center Giulio Onesti, working for just under two hours in helmets and shorts.

“It was good to get back in a football mentality, get in a really good workout out here and we went into a speed and tempo that got these guys back into (that mode),” Harbaugh said. “We brought the tempo down to about 85 percent, just because all the walking around and traveling they’ve been doing.”