Focused and Determined: First-year coach Tullis likes what he sees out of Eagles two-a-day football practices
By JOSEPH ELERSON | News-Telegram Sports Writer
Aug. 7, 2007 - COMO - After a tough 2006 football season, the Como-Pickton Eagles returned to the practice field on Monday for the start of two-a-day practices, and head coach Paul Tullis was pleased with what he saw after Day 1.
"Day 1 was great for us and the kids had a lot of focus," Tullis said. "We looked really sharp and the practices went really good. They remembered more from last spring then I thought they would and they looked real good. We had 33 kids show up yesterday for the first day of two-a-days and most of the varsity kids that I thought were going to show up were here."
Tullis said prior to practices he knew some of his athletes - primarily the junior varsity players - had prior commitments heading into preseason workouts and would join the team when school starts on Aug. 27.
Monday was the first preseason workouts with Tullis at the helm after taking over for Joe Ryzman, who is now a member of the Lindale coaching staff, and he was impressed with the conditioning and work ethic of his players for the first day of practice.
"I think we did good. We ran pretty hard yesterday with conditioning and everybody made it through it," he said. "Of course, you would like for everybody to be in better shape than they are, but we are doing good right now."
In the opening session, the players divided into groups with linemen on one end of the field, while receivers and running backs and quarterbacks worked on the other end of the field with offensive drills. Tullis said in the second session, the team would switch to defensive drills.
"We are trying to get through everything that we learned last spring and make sure we have everything covered," the coach said. "The kids exceeded my expectations yesterday with what they remembered, and we are going to put a lot on them today and see how much they retained from last year."
He said this year the offense will be a more run-oriented team than in the past and using clock management will be a key concept for the Eagles.
"We are not going to run the same offense that we ran during 7-on-7. We are going to be a ball control offense and try to run the clock out and make the game shorter this year," he said. "The enthusiasm that we had during 7-on-7 and the patience we showed with us not throwing the ball deep and being consistent with the short passes helped us out a lot this summer with our offensive scheme."