Stevens A Day of Reminding Follows a Day Of Rest

Aug. 13, 2012

By Richard Stevens - Senior Writer/

RUIDOSO, N.M. -- It was a day of short pants and long pants. It was a day of reminding that followed a day of reward.

The reminding that a sense of urgency is needed for every repetition came from Lobo Coach Bob Davie and his staff and they watched the Lobos take to the practice fields on the north side of the Lodge at Sierra Blanca.

Monday's practice followed a Sunday off for the University of New Mexico team that had practiced ten straight days. It's probably fair to say the Lobos didn't come out of the gate strong on this warm Ruidoso morning.

"I don't know that I've ever see a team practice ten straight days," said Davie. "I was appreciative of their efforts. It was ten straight days, they worked hard, and it was intense. They needed a break. But they also needed to be reminded of why they are here.

"We were going to stay in shoulder pads and helmets (on Monday), but the way the energy was going, we needed to make a change. You always hope that they will come back energized after a day off, but that's rarely the case.

"We didn't come out with the right energy and the coaches decided to change things up and get back in full pads and I think it got us going. One positive is I didn't hear any whining or moaning. They went about their business."

About half of Monday's practice was spent in shoulder pads, jersey and light shorts. Then Davie sent the players back up to the Lodge to put on regular football pants with pads. That means more weight, more sweat, and more effort to move.

"I think it got us going," said senior defender, Joseph Harris. "Sometimes you just don't come out the right way. Sometimes you just don't come out as hard as you should and definitely some of us came out sluggish.

"Coach wasn't happy. He saw the sluggishness, so he sent us back in to get fully padded and I think we changed our intensity. I think we ended up having a great day. I saw a lot of effort."

Said Lobo senior receiver Lamaar Thomas: "The coaching didn't think things were clicking and didn't think we came out with the right energy. The coaches changed things up and I think it got us going."

Davie's message to the team at the end of practice was one he has been trying to push home since the first day he met with the Lobo players. They can't afford to waste any time or any repetitions, if they want to change what has been happening on the field for the past three seasons.

The sense of urgency has an immediate date circled on the calendar, too - Sept. 1, when Southern comes to visit University Stadium. Davie's plan is to field a Lobo team that plays with passion, with smarts, that executes and doesn't self-destruct. He doesn't yet see that team.

"But we still have some time," said Davie.

The Day Off: The Lobos day off, of course, wasn't a total day off. There were still treatments, film to study, and team meetings. However, the Lobos were given a break from the football field.

The Lobos chose a variety of distractions with their time off ranging from music time to bed time to movie time and even to some time on the golf course.

"I slept most of the morning," said Lamaar Thomas. "I got up in time to catch the end of breakfast and then I went back to sleep and woke up for lunch. I took another quick nap and then went to the movies."

It seems the movie of choice for most of the Lobos was the new Batman release with a few opting for the latest Borne episode.

"It (Batman) was one of the best movies I've ever seen," said Thomas. "I'm interested to see the next one. I don't know how he got out of that blast. I think he must have fixed the auto pilot. There has to be a sequel."

Senior Joe Harris said the day off was "much needed." We practiced for ten straight days and that starts to wear on your body," said Harris. "Coach was kind enough to give us a day off and we needed it."

Harris said he got a little extra sleep time, watched the U.S. Olympic men's basketball team win gold, played some dominoes, saw the Batman movie, and then hacked around the golf course for nine holes.

"I went to the driving range and got my aim right and then played nine holes," he said. "It was only my second time playing golf and I didn't do very well. I have a lot of respect for that game. It's tough."