EL CENTRO – As summer heat ensues and the school year on the brink, the Central Spartans took to the field on August first for hell-week, in prepararation for the upcoming season.
On the first day of practice, the Spartan’s stadium echoed with the players’ voices chanting as they drilled with Spartan-jacks, setting the tough environment. Warmed-up, the varsity squad split into workstations fighting for the position they would play, while engaging in basics such as different angles of tackling drills.
For the defensive linemen, they took a three-point stance, then shot around the offensive linemen to make the tackle. To simulate these tackles, the Spartan coaches used tackling wheels, to teach players the fundamentals of stopping the oppositions run game.
At another station, the Spartans’ linebackers worked on different tackling fundamentals. The objective of the station consisted of the linebackers wrapping around an exercise ball, while running straight ahead.
The final hell-week tackling station included the whole team working on tackling from the side. Players sprinted towards the center of the field making contact with the tackling wheel.
Each station took fifteen-minutes with rotations throughout the practice.
“We started off hell-week by teaching the fundamentals of body tackling, to ensure our players safety, by helping them learn to keep their head safe while making a tackle,” said head coach, David Peńa.
With the first stages of hell-week behind them, head coach David Peńa stated the next step for the upcoming practices would be conditioning and trying to form a connection between the team and the complete new staff of varsity coaches.
“We are a complete new staff for the Spartans varsity squad and while each of us are new, we have three Spartan Alumni as coaches, that helps us connect with the players through Central High School traditions,” said coach Peńa.
Last year, the Spartans completed their season with an overall record of 3-8. The new staff will look to improve the previous record by getting the team used to the new system and style they have begun to implement in hell-week.