Wildcats learn discipline at morning workout
Bobby "Butch" Burney | News-Telegram Sports Editor

Aug. 8, 2006 - The Sulphur Springs Wildcats learned Monday afternoon that the "D" is the meat of the C-D-P sandwich.

Following the second practice of the two-a-day football workouts, head coach Greg Owens and his staff put the players through a grueling wind sprint segment, then several players had to stay after practice for more conditioning to make up for missing the morning workout.

Owens, who addressed the players at length before the start of Monday's morning practice about what is expected of them, said it all goes along with the character-discipline-passion standards.

"Day 1, we're just trying to get their minds right," Owens explained. "It's the things I talked to them Monday morning about - C-D-P - character, discipline and passion. We're working on the discipline part right now.

"We're finding out who's going to be there with us and who's going to toe the line. We told them this morning how it was going to be, that is was going to be tough, and they're just going to have to make it. And they will. "

The players - and there are more than 100 varsity and JV who showed up for the first day - finished off the practice by sprinting the width of the practice field, touching the line and sprinting back. They did it three times in a row, then twice in a row, then up and back four separate times.

By the time it was over, it became apparent which players had been working out over the course of the summer.

"I'm fired up about the kids. A lot of them busted their tails this whole summer," Owens said. "They did the running with no problem. They were in shape. The others, we've got to catch them up."

After that, several others had to do up-downs for either missing practice or some other infraction.

"These kids know if they miss, they're going to make it up. There's not going to be a free ride," Owens explained. "They are going to be sore. There are going to be a few gut checks in the morning. They're going to find out who's going to come back."

Owens realizes that the timing of the practices makes it hard on the players. By going early in the morning (6-8 a.m.) and then as late as sunlight will allow in the evening (5-8 p.m.), there is time for the players to get stiff and sore in between practices on the same day.

"It's the old school days. It's the true two-a-day deal," he said. "Just the way inservice falls, that's what we had to do. But, I really liked their enthusiasm."

Especially since practice was broken down into basic, fundamental teaching segments by the coaches who want to make sure the players are following the new terminology and philosophy.

The only real kinks were just scheduling issues of which players need to be at which stations at a certain time. But, that will quickly work itself out.

"Overall, I was pleased with them. We didn't get to see a whole lot. We had to slow down and really teach them slow today, but every day this week we'll get a little better and a little faster," Owens said. "Then, we'll pull back on Friday when we put the pads on and get back to the fundamentals of hitting."

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