|Spring training wraps up with big game|
|Written by Laura Chambers | The Bison|
|Friday, 06 April 2012 08:55|
Although this spring has been warmer than usual, the Bison football team is still gearing up for next season with its annual spring practices, which kicked off on March 12. Each day of spring practice, the Bisons spend hours perfecting fundamentals, scrimmaging and team-building. Head football coach Ronnie Huckeba said the unexpected heat has been challenging, but the Bisons were prepared to work through it.
“I am really pleased with the way our guys are performing,” Huckeba said. “It’s not normally this warm. It’s more like summer or fall practice, but we’ve been able to work through it, and that’s really good. The guys had a great offseason and were prepared physically.”
Junior center Dallon Hudson said he thought the temperature on the turf was nearly 90 degrees this year for spring practice. Last year, he said he could not participate in spring practice because of an injury, but he remembers that there was ice on the field his first year on the Bison football team during spring practice.
Hudson said he valued spring practice because it gives players a benchmark for how their season will be in the fall.
“Spring practice lets you know where you are and where you need to be for the fall,” Hudson said.
The NCAA allows all college football programs to hold 15 days of practice each spring to transition from the offseason into summer and fall training. Most teams choose to use these practices to focus on the basics, like tackling and blocking, and to give new players more experience with the football because they are not preparing to play an opponent at the end of the week. Also, according to senior defensive end Josh Aldridge, the scrimmages at the end of practice can become more physical because the players are not as worried about injury.
During the fall season, the offense and defense typically do not practice against each other, but spring practice allows them time to have “spirited competition,” according to Huckeba.
“There’s a lot of talk in the weight room, so it’s fun to bang up on the defense, but we’re still friends at the end of the day,” Hudson said.
In these scrimmages, players who normally do not get as much playing time are able to get more experience with the ball to prepare them for the fall.
“We’re young on offense this year, so it’s good for them to get the experience,” Aldridge said. “It would be tough if we didn’t have spring practice because it’s a good time to give new guys reps they normally don’t get in the fall. Teams that have good spring practices have good fall seasons.”
When the Bisons finish their last spring practice on Monday, they will not practice again until the summer as they prepare to play in the new Great American Conference for the first time. Last season the Bisons were in a transitional season during which they played some teams from their previous conference, the Gulf South Conference, and some teams that would also be in the GAC this fall.
|Last Updated on Friday, 06 April 2012 09:02|