Run to the Ball, Play to the Whistle
STATESBORO, Ga. - The Georgia Southern Football team went through a 23-period practice Saturday morning that included several periods of team interaction. The Eagles went through drills and then team periods allowed them to work though game situations with the one, two and three offenses and defenses.
"This gave us an opportunity to get both offense and defense in a live situation where they were out there and we were making a defensive call, making an offensive call, and having to execute," said Eagles Head Coach Jeff Monken. "It's good for those guys to have to think and not have coaches out there telling them on each snap, 'this is what you do on this play, this is what this call means.' They have had to take what they learned this week and recall some of the information from the fall and apply that today."
Several scenarios came up during the offense versus defense contact periods allowing the Eagles on both sides of the ball to execute the plays and schemes and learn from each situation. Practice film will tell both the coaches and the players even more after it is cut up and reviewed.
"We had a lot of really good situations," Monken said. "We were way backed up and had a long way to go on the field, and then we had some situations where we were down on the goal line. We had some fourth down situations, times where we had to throw the ball and kick some field goals, so it was good work for us."
In addition to instruction or corrections, the Georgia Southern coaching staff can constantly be heard reminding the Eagles to "play to the whistle," and "run to the ball." The effort in practice directly correlates to the effort in games - keeping the mindset consistent -- even if there isn't a game in the immediate future.
"We really feel it is important, and that just goes along with playing with effort," said Monken. "We feel like if we aren't coaching them to play hard and play with great effort from snap to the whistle, at some point they are going to start to tail off and not finish the play. We tell them to run to the ball because that really encourages them and demands that they play full speed until the whistle blows.
In one memorable game situation last year, getting to a fumble quickly affected the outcome of the game. Monken and the staff can't emphasize that point enough.
"A lot of good things can happen if you are doing that (playing at full speed)," Monken said. "The defense can get there and be the second or third tackler, recover a fumble if it is on the ground. Same with the offense, they get there, they might get a block, or if a guy breaks a tackle, they might get a block that springs him, or if the ball goes on the ground, they might be the one to recover a fumble. We try to get them to play hard all the way through and that is something we have always stressed."
The schedule for the upcoming week is a little different from the first week. The Eagles will practice on Monday, Tuesday and Friday afternoon and then go on Saturday morning.
SPRING FOOTBALL PRACTICE SCHEDULE
Georgia Southern Football conducts practices on the practice fields between "Beautiful Eagle Creek" and Tillman Road. Schedule and location are subject to change. Practices are open to the public, but any filming, recording or photography is limited to members of the media only.
2011 SPRING PRACTICE DATES
Monday, March 28
Tuesday, March 29
Friday, April 1
Saturday, April 2
Monday, April 4
Tuesday, April 5
Thursday, April 7
Saturday, April 9
Tuesday, April 12
Thursday, April 14
Friday, April 15 (Spring Game)
FLAT STANLEY AT FOOTBALL PRACTICE
Sporting a Georgia Southern football jersey, Flat Stanley paid a visit to the Eagles practice earlier in the week. The Mason Creek Elementary School class in Winston, Ga., sent Flat Stanley to check up on the team's progress and snap a photo with his favorite football team.
COACHES CLINIC DATE SET
Georgia Southern will hold a spring Coaches Clinic Friday-Saturday, April 1-2, with coaching sessions and chalk talks with the Eagles' staff. For additional information, contact Vic Cabral at (912) 478-5522 or by fax at (912) 478-5059. The Coaches' Clinic brochure and the full schedule of events is available on the GeorgiaSouthernEagles.com website. Coaches who pre-register pay $30 while those who register on the day of the clinic will be charged $40.
EFFA REVERSE RAFFLE & AUCTION
The fourth annual Eagle Football Assistance Association (EFAA) Reverse Raffle and Auction is scheduled for Saturday, April 16th, the night after the Blue-White Spring Game. The evening of great live entertainment, food and opportunity to spend time with the Georgia Southern Football coaching staff and former Eagle players also features the opportunity to win $10,000. The social hour and ticket check-in begins at 6 p.m. at the Gene Bishop Field House.
Reverse Raffle tickets can be purchased from the Georgia Southern Athletic Foundation for $100 each and each ticket covers food, beverages for the ticket purchaser and a guest. Reverse Raffle ticket purchasers need not be present at the event to win the grand prize.
Created to assist former Eagles in need of financial help, the EFAA invites all former football players, coaches and athletics staff to support the association through annual membership and fundraising efforts. Proceeds from the Reverse Raffle event benefit perennial EFAA projects including the Erk Russell Memorial Scholarship, the Eagle Fund, the GSU Athletic Foundation and Georgia Southern Football.
For more information about the event or to purchase tickets for the Reverse Raffle, contact the Georgia Southern University Athletic Foundation at (912) 478-5520.
- Category: Football
- Published on Saturday, 26 March 2011 17:09