The Turnaround – Day 8

by Jason Strunk
Lubbock High School Football Head Coach
Follow @WestTXCoach

Devin Hughes

Devin Hughes doing his best Strunky impression in the Lubbock HS locker room.

Mental and physical toughness. The Westerners continue to hit upon these two major concepts. Every day, some how, some way, we make it happen. Day eight was about as tough we we can get. I think we passed the test. EASILY!

It was a great day, which started off with Devin Hughes giving his best Strunk impersonation. Loved it! Seriously, if you don’t take time to do this kind of stuff with your team, you take yourself way to seriously… Anyway, back to what I was starting to say. Practice started great. The energy level was there. We looked crisp, fresh legs. It was good to see.

My only negative: we need to catch more balls. Too many drops right now. I’m not comfortable with where we are at in that department. But it will come. We will keep slinging balls at them. They will catch them. Why? Because they have no other choice. We sling it. It’s our staple. We will get to where we need to be.

On the whole, I like what I am seeing. Friday will give me more of an indication as to where we are at. But right now, I am

Our theme is mental and physical toughness. We need to create ways to get them to where they need to be. I personally believe cold weather and cold situations make you tougher, both mentally and physically.

Last night we ended practice with kickers, snappers, holders and the defense playing around in some ice water. First, we had the PAT/FG units set up. We placed ice buckets in front of the snappers, holders and kickers. For thirty seconds, they dunked their hands (kickers dunked their kicking foot) and then started operating under cold, wet circumstances. They handled it well! It was good stuff! No excuses, just results. We got results in adverse circumstances. You need to create this when you can.

Lubbock HS iceWe ended practice with the defense doing an obstacle and tackle circuit. We used garbage cans for our ice baths. Our student managers, Lexi and Danielle, filled the cans with water and ice. We set the cans up side by side, five cans total. We had the defense submerge their entire body in the ice for one minute. Once they were done, they jumped out and dove through two large tractor tires. Once they were through, they met seven offensive lineman holding shields. They jammed the bags, locking out elbows. When the bag jamming was done they weaved through seven bags, held by coaches, and tackled them. It was chaotic. It was fun. It was exciting!

Why do this? Mental and physical toughness. Their legs were numb. Hands numb. Tired. Wet. Cold. Play football like that just one time. Let me know how you feel. It takes a mentally tough person to wage through that. This will help us adapt and adjust to any circumstance we face! Need to be tough! They are getting it.

– I’m terrified of sharks.
– My favorite place to visit in Laguna Beach is (besides Fisher’s house) is Tommy Bahamas.
– Coach Devin Kline’s Dentist is Tim Watley.
– Football is fun; try it.

About the Author

Jeff Fisher
Jeff is an award-winning journalist and expert in the field of high school sports, underscored with his appearance on CNBC in 2010 to talk about the big business of high school football in America. Jeff turned to his passion for high school football into an entrepreneurial venture called High School Football America, a digital media company focused on producing original high school sports content for radio, television and the internet. Jeff is co-founder and editor-in-chief of High School Football America, which is a media partner with USA TODAY High School Sports.