It was 5 AM when the alarm went off and the managers convened on a slippery Howard Jones field for practice Friday morning. The bye-week-end is here and the Trojans got things done early to give players, coaches, and even us some time off.
Managers set up the equipment for drills on the field just like ever other
day, but the cool air, wet ground, and dark sky made it seem surreal. Out on the
field first were head manager Randall Green and Brandon Buehler, manager for the
wide receivers, both zipping around in the Keyshawn Kart.
I made it out with the fourth returning student manager, David Toper, and along with the crew of eight new managers this year, we had everything ready and were playing catch before the players left the locker room.
The coaches found their way to their normal positions with just as much energy and excitement (if not more) than any other day. The conversation was light-hearted as wide receiver coach John Morton and I discussed the physics behind the slightly lower pressure in the footballs. The players showed up soon thereafter, and practice was underway.
During practice, the main job of the student managers is to make the practice run smoothly with easy transitions from one period/drill to the next, and despite the early hour, everything went according to plan. We were tired and delirious, but on point nonetheless.
After practice, the managers joined the team for breakfast and assembled for their last duty of the weekend - distribution of the team's travel suits for away games. The Trojans will be looking sharp in black and gold traveling to the game in Nebraska, and will be leaving on Thursday, the 13th. Joining them will be a small crew of managers, also traveling in style.
For now, we get a short break until we're back at it on Monday, looking forward to a fresh week and a great game in Lincoln.