Column: Feeling Like FootballPublished 10:06pm Monday, August 20, 2012
As I’ve been running from football practice to practice over the last week to prepare for the Fall Sports Preview section, that old feeling is in the air again.
It’s the feeling that comes with a cool autumn breeze and a hard hit that breaks the silence of the cooling temperatures.
Put simply, it’s almost football season.
I enjoy every sport I cover and basketball is actually my favorite, but there’s something about a Friday night in the fall.
The crowds are bigger and the lights just seem brighter.
I’ve already seen some interesting sights while watching some of the area teams practice.
The Austin football team already looks to have a new attitude under first year head coach football coach Brett Vesel.
I only watched half of a practice and I think I heard more yelling from players than I heard the entire season last year.
Vesel has the team working hard and the players are responding to his system, that included a three-day boot camp which pushed players to their physical limits.
A Numbers Game
The Lyle-Pacelli football team is going to have to be in excellent shape this season.
The squad has around 20 players and many of them will not see the bench until the game is over.
I have nothing but respect for players who can go full speed for 48 minutes without getting so much as a quick breather.
The team is hoping to add some more bodies, but right now rest will be few and far between for the LP starters.
Speed to Burn
In Southland, it’s all about speed. The Rebels don’t have the big, physical type of team they usually put out, but they have more than enough fast players to go around.
Southland senior running back Mike Goergen can run with anyone in the area and head coach Shawn Kennedy said he’s got a couple of other players that are at or near Goergen’s pace.
That could make things very difficult for defenses that line up against Southland’s offense.
Don’t Count Them Out
Blooming Prairie graduated a lot of its players who took them to two Class ‘A’ state football tournaments in the last three years, but don’t think the Awesome Blossoms are finished.
BP returns a stellar offensive line and it has reloaded at all of the skill positions.
During the practice I happened to watch in BP, the Blossoms looked better than they have in the past three years.
I know it’s just practice and I know it’s early, but that’s impressive for a squad that is bringing in a lot of new players to the lineup.
I also have to give credit to BP senior Michael Thomas for making the best play I’ve seen in any practice this fall.
Thomas was running a short route when he had to reach down to his toes to haul in a pass. Instead of catching it cleanly, Thomas, while continuing to sprint, tipped the ball with his finger tips and was able to clasp it in with his hands. By the time he completed the catch, Thomas was already accelerating towards the goal line.
Those are the plays that make Friday night’s fun and the season’s just two weeks away.
I can’t wait.