Football practice officially underway

Will Cheney

With the wet weather that has been plaguing Statesboro the past two days, the Georgia Southern University football team’s schedule has also been affected.

Due to lightning, the team’s Tuesday practice had to begin indoors at Hanner Field House. Practicing indoors can, however, hinder a team’s practice regimen.

“The weather during camp wasn’t so bad. We had one afternoon on a two-a-day where we had to go over to the gyms at the RAC. Luckily those were available because school hadn’t started yet,” GSU head football coach Jeff Monken said. “It affects our preparation tremendously in a negative way. We just can’t get done in the gym what we can out here. We have to try to make that up over the next several practices.”

Being forced to practice indoors rather than on a football field is not ideal. Practicing on a hardwood floor with no contact can set a team back as far as preparing for an upcoming game.

An indoor football practice mostly consists of a walk-through of different plays that the coordinators are planning to use in the upcoming game. The use of scout teams during practices is crucial. Scout teams consist of players that are, more than often, not on the active roster.

A scout team’s purpose is to emulate the tendencies of what the opponent might do in the upcoming game. The offense practices against a scout team that emulates upcoming opponents’ defenses plays and tendencies, and the defense practices against a scout team that emulates upcoming opponents’ offensive plays and tendencies.

Being forced to practice indoors a couple of times isn’t ideal, however, if the remaining days leading up to the season opener bring sunny skies, those couple of days will have just been a speed bump on GSU’s road to the 2013 football season.

With the rest of this week and all of next week to prepare, weather permitting; Monken’s squad will have an abundance of knowledge about how to react to Savannah State University’s playcallers on Aug. 31.

With former GSU quarterback Jaybo Shaw returning to GSU as an assistant coach, Monken believes it can only help his already successful team.

Monken said, “He brings leadership. He’s a great kid, our guys really respect Jaybo. He loves Georgia Southern, and I think he’ll be a great mentor and leader.”