Army Opens Preseason Drills

Army coach Stan Brock was nowhere to be found during the first half of the Black Knights' first preseason practice on Friday. However, then Brock rolled up on a golf cart. Brock's delay was due to the fact that he was three days removed from having prostate cancer surgery. Just 24 hours earlier, he was released from the hospital.

Not the best way to start the season, but if the Black Knights put up as much fight as Brock and show as much determination, this could be a pretty good season."It's the season. I'm not going to sit in the house," Brock stated afterward. "Doc let me out of the hospital yesterday and I went up to see the guys on the fourth floor of Kimsey Center last night. You've got to get that energy from them. You feed off the kids. You like being around them. This is what I like to do. This is where I'd like to be. I think technically this is where I'm supposed to be.

"I'm real excited about the start of the season. The kids have worked so hard through the spring. They had an awesome summer. The attitude is just different. It's so upbeat. The kids are happy and they're excited about getting going, and I just feed off of that. I feel good about where we're going and what we're trying to accomplish here. I feel good about the players we have and getting started. "During a physical in July, Brock was diagnosed with prostate cancer. He underwent successful surgery at a hospital in nearby Middletown on Tuesday and was released from the hospital Thursday. Doctors gave Brock a positive prognosis and he's expected to make a complete recovery. Brock plans to return to the coaching sidelines ful-time next week.

Brock arrived late on Friday, but was still able to take in one of the most beautiful days of the summer, as his charges worked up a sweat on Howze Field. With Brock out, offensive coordinator Tim Walsh and defensive coordinator John Mumford put their units through a team and individual drills.Some sights and sounds from the first practice included the offense running a few options plays. Freshman Paul McIntosh looked as good as advertised. Army returned to the field on Saturday, but can't really get moving until Wednesday. That's when they can finally put on full pads and participate in contact drills. "It felt like riding a bike again,"

Army defensive end Victor Ugenyi said. "We had a good summer with training, but nothing beats being on the field playing football. We have the same energy level as last year, but we're more focused. We're a little more loose now. We're having fun wreaking havoc wherever we go. We're ready to put on pads. Running around and tagging, that's all fun, but defense isn't about tagging, it's about knocking someone out. We're waiting for that. We're waiting for when we can get pads on. We still have a lot of work to do, to get everyone to where they know their assignments cold, but attitude right now ... we're ready to hit somebody."

Most publications aren't giving Army much of a chance this season. They expect that Black Knights to suffer another losing season. The Black Knights haven't been a winner since 1996. But with this kind of fight, it wouldn't be wise to count Army out.


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