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Northwest Bearcats

Press Release


April 5, 2013

Bearcats stay hungry during spring drills

Bearcats stay hungry during spring drills

By David Boyce

All the freshmen who redshirted last fall for Northwest Missouri State football team should have at least one goal as they go through the 15 spring practices: Get on the bus!

Spring football practice is the first legitimate opportunity these players can make a favorable impression with the coaches and make the traveling squad when the Bearcats play as far away as Fort Hays State or as close as Missouri Western in the fall.

“They know they have to make a move in 15 practices if they want to have any shot of making the bus next year,” Northwest coach Adam Dorrel said.

Of course, spring football means more than seeing which freshman is ready to step up to the next level and make the traveling squad.

“After spring ball you have a really good idea of what you have, who can play for you in the fall and if there are holes you need to fix,” Dorrel said.

Still, this is a vital time for the freshmen. They spent last fall conditioning, watching practice and playing the role of the scout team.

Even though football games are still five months away, the practices the Bearcats are having in the first week of April are important.

“The biggest thing in a program like ours, where we redshirt so many of the freshmen, they have minimal exposure to our offense and defense and special teams in the fall,” Dorrel said.

“Personally, the most gratifying thing about spring football is working with the kids who just redshirted because they are real hungry. They want to succeed. It is really fresh in their mind. They have just come off on the scout team and that is not a pleasant experience.”

Dorrel is not concerned about the freshmen forgetting what they learned in April when August rolls around.

“I think they retain a lot,” Dorrel said. “We finish on April 20. We will go the following week with exit interviews and things of that nature. And then the kids have finals and then they go home for a week.

“Basically, our kids take 2 ½ weeks off and then they start back in the weight room with summer conditioning and videos. It is voluntary. Last year we had 90 kids up here last summer.

“I think our kids have a lot of retention because they pick back up where we left off in spring ball.”

A program like Northwest that wants to win conference championships and national championships cannot afford to have poor spring football practices.

It was why Dorrel was a bit disappointed after Tuesday’s practice, the first workout after spring break.

“It was just OK,” he said. “We can’t have anymore OK practices. Our execution needs to be a lot better than it was Tuesday.”

There has never been a case when a national champion in football was declared in the spring. But…

“I think spring ball leads into everything,” Dorrel said. “It is a springboard into your summer conditioning program. Your summer leads into your fall camp.

“I don’t think you can win a conference championship or national championship in spring ball, but you can sure lose one if you don’t have a good spring. You can limit your success in the fall by having 15 bad spring practices.”

For more information, please contact:

Media Relations Department, Northwest Athletics | 660.562.1118 | Fax: 660.562.1582

Northwest Athletics
Lamkin Activity Center | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468