Monday, October 17, 2011

Walk-On Tryout

First I would like to apologize for not letting you (reader) know about how my walk-on tryout went for football. I have been busy with school and haven't had time to blog. I found in my last blog post that I said that I would blog at least twice a week, but what I meant to say was twice a month. Sorry if I got your hopes up. Sooooo let's start this!

I had a little checklist of "first things" to do once I got to Tucson. The list was actually pretty long, but here are what were in my top five: find my apartment complex, find school, find a solid church that I can go to, go shopping for my apartment, and find the football office. Luckily the first four went pretty well. Finding the football office was a pain though. It is in an area where most students don't go to so I had to ask some random people on the street where it was and they kindly directed me to the right area. I found eventually it. I asked the receptionist when the tryouts were and she responded by telling me that I had to get a sickle cell blood test and a physical before I could even fill out a form. I got right to work and got everything finished. I turned my forms in and they told me the date of the tryout. I was soooo stoked! I had been working out at the student rec center lifting weights and doing footwork drills leading up to the tryout so I felt very prepared. About 40 other guys showed up to try out. All 40 of us were waiting outside the office stretching and doing warm ups. It ended up being pointless because we went to get our height and weight measured which took almost half an hour. They gave us jerseys so that they could identify us by number instead of name. I was #32 for this tryout. After height and weight we all went outside to time our 40's. This is where it gets kind of crazy. There was a thunder and lightning storm going on while we were running! I don't know about you, but that was freaking me out. I was the ONLY one freaking out. I think it's because I'm not used to it. Anyways, the coaches didn't tell us our times but I feel like I ran a pretty fast 40. This was the longest part of the tryout. We walked to the actual practice field to go finish our tryout. It was pretty intimidating walking on that field because most of the UA football players stayed to watch our tryout after their practice. The only two UA football players that I knew coming here were Juron Criner and Nick Foles so they were the only ones that I could recognize that were in the crowd of football players watching us. The coaches split us up positionally and the shortest tryout ever started. They gave us one rep on every single drill. We did 3 drills. They gave us one shot for the one-on-one portion of the tryout. I had to go up against this GIGANTIC islander receiver. I honestly couldn't tell if he was fast or not so I didn't play bump on him. I didn't want to look like a woosie by playing off-man on him so I put myself in an awkward distance for him at 3 yards instead. I was thinking that he was going run a fade (he's like 6'5 maybe more), but that quickly changed. He danced at the line a bit  so I let him do his thing and then followed him up the field for about 7 yards. I was sure he was going deep. He made the mistake of giving me the inside and ended up running a slant which was perfect for me. The quarterback threw a bad ball and it went behind both of us. I felt like that was a good one-on-one rep for me. I think about 3 more guys went after me (they hadn't gotten a rep) and then the tryout ended. I know that I did better than most of the db's that were there with everything combined (40 + footwork drills +one-on-one). I think that they just weren't looking for my position. They made us break and when everyone was walking out of it, we all saw that almost all of the coaches were watching the kicking battle between two of the other tryout guys. A bunch of guys started dropping 4 letter words and saying that the tryout was pointless because nobody watched. I guess they were right. I don't think that UA needed my position at that time. They NEED a kicker.

Overall I'm not disappointed in how I performed. I have been lifting 6 out of the 7 days in the week and have been doing speed work as well as footwork drills at UA's rec center. I am confident that I can make the team through the spring walk-on tryout.

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