Sometimes coaches have to act a little crazy.
With the reduction of two-a-day practices during preseason camp, some Big 12 Conference football coaches resorted to unorthodox methods to get their players’ attention.
Ell Roberson, Kansas State quarterback, said coach Bill Snyder wore a wool coat during the Wildcats’ two-a-day practices, many which took place in near-100-degree heat.
“If we have to come out there in our pads, he’ll come out there the same way,” Roberson said. “I don’t know if it’s just to give us a feel of, it’s hot out here but he’s doing it, too. We’ve got a lot of respect for coach and I know he’s not going to do anything to hurt us by putting us out in the heat.”
Like many teams, Baylor stayed in residence halls for most of August. Unlike other teams, players were restricted from everything except football.
“We just needed to come together as a football team, and learn how to play as a team and care about each other as a football team,” coach Guy Morriss said. “We took away the cars because we didn’t want them out running around, didn’t want them in a car accident. Same thing with the cell phones; just eliminate distractions so that we can stay focused.”
The players stayed 12 nights and roomed with teammates who played a different position from them, were from a different part of the country or had a different ethnicity.
“I know the kids appreciated it because now they understand why we did it and the value of it,” Morriss said.
GUNNING FOR NO. 1: In preseason polls, ESPN/USA Today and the Associated Press voted Oklahoma as the No. 1 team. Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops said the Sooners don’t need to be ranked No. 1 to be on the lookout for an upset-minded team.
“Regardless of where we’re at, we get about everybody’s best shot,” Stoops said. “We’ve been used to that for quite a few years, not all of a sudden.”
In 1999, Florida State became the only team to start and finish the season No. 1. Stoops said his team is ready to be the next.
“We are looking forward to the challenge of it,” Stoops said. “It’s not like it can’t be done. I’m kind of an odds guy; I look things as, well, it’s due to happen again.”
The Sooners play North Texas at home Saturday.
SCHEDULE WOES: Oklahoma State and Nebraska play in Lincoln on Saturday, and Colorado plays rival Colorado State. It is a challenge for teams to play a game of importance immediately, Nebraska coach Frank Solich said.
“For both teams, it’s a little different scenario, but it will prove for a lot of excitement,” Solich said. “Normally you’d prefer to open up with nonconference opponents and build into conference play.”
Colorado coach Gary Barnett said although fans enjoy seeing a rivalry played out at the beginning of the season, he would like the CU-CSU game to move to the end of the season.
“By the end of the year everything’s evened out,” Barnett said. “Look at every other rivalry and tell me why they play at the end of the year instead of the beginning. For all the reasons they play at the end is why I want to play at the end.”