The University of New Mexico football team got a glimpse of what life would be like after spring practice – and then took in a Greek comedy.
The Lobos practiced without shoulder pads Thursday on the second to last day of spring football practice. The session was the first without pads since the first two days of spring back in March.
Teams are required to spend three practice sessions in helmets and shorts, and UNM was filling that requirement. Coach Bob Davie used the practice to the team’s advantage. He used the closing minutes to allow the players to demonstrate to the coaching staff how they’ll spend their summer nights when they get together for volunteer work.
During the summer, workouts are completely voluntary and coaches cannot take part or even watch the workouts. So the staff was getting their coaching in now, while they’re still allowed.
“Tonight what we did, which is a little different, we took the last 20 minutes of practice and the players kind of went through what they’ll do this summer in the offseason workouts when the coaches aren’t there,” Davie said. “They can bring the footballs out and do football-related things as long as coaches aren’t there, and if they’re going to get together and do things, which teams do, we want to make sure that they do it the right way and do it the safe way. So we could advise them on ways to be safer and more productive.”
After the Lobos finished their practice, they hosted the, Greek Life Football and Cheer Clinic, in which members of the various UNM sororities took part in football drills with the team, while members of the campus’ fraternities worked with the Lobo spirit squad on some cheerleading drills.
Though the Lobos were the hosts, they again were on the receiving end of the entertainment value. After about 45 minutes of drills, the Lobos and sorority participants gathered at midfield and judged four groups of fraternities go through a series of cheers and judged the best group.
“We go to do some football drills,” said Kelsey Lang, one of the sorority participants. “We threw, we passed, we caught. We even had to tackle those big red things (blocking dummies) that are really funny. My favorite thing was tackling the big red thing. I hurt my thumb, but it was really fun.
“The boys (football players) were really nice and they were very encouraging.”
Lang said she kept beating one particular player in a race and the Lobo coaches kept making them race because she kept beating him. She said the player’s name was “Sam” – as in punter Gentry or defensive end Mabany.
Greek Life Student Activities Coordinator Crystle Collier lauded the event, which created a bond between the student-athletes and Greek communities.
“There’s not a lot of opportunities for these communities to get together and a lot of times these communities aren’t viewed as people,” she said.
"So I think it was cool that they got to come out here and see that they’re actually just people and they’re two communities that should support one another.”
The highlight of the event was the fraternity “Team Fired Up” stole the cheerleading competition away from “Team USA” because Fired Up had a ringer (photo at the top of the page) that performed back flips during their routine.