Photo by Gerald Castillo
Bobcats learning practice routines during mock game week
Texas State can’t afford any hesitation the week it prepares to face No. 12 Texas A&M on Aug. 29.
To give the Bobcats a running start, head coach Jake Spavital has his team running through a mock game week, showing players what each day of practice will look like and what he’ll be expecting of them.
“We're transitioning into this mock week, which is great for every single person that touches this program,” Spavital said. “Everybody knows where they're going, how it's supposed to flow and it makes the preparation kind of intensify a little bit more when you get into game week. So these guys are kind of itching to start getting into the (Texas) A&M installations — which we're briefly putting in because we don't want to go all in on A&M right now, we actually got to worry about how we practice it … but I think they have an understanding on how we practice.”
The team’s typical week begins on Sunday, the day after a game. The head coach intends to keep it light, mainly focusing on special teams work and going through initial offensive and defensive walkthroughs. Monday will serve as a full recovery day, with no required football activities.
“That's a day where they'll have treatments if they need to, but it's their day to get away from the facility and actually be a student,” Spavital said.
The Bobcats will return early Tuesday morning to deep dive into the game plan for the week, making installations for their upcoming opponents. Wednesday will be the first day of full pads, combining a physical element with what the players learned the day before.
Thursdays will be another light day, consisting of more walkthroughs, long meetings and recovery. Spavital said the backup units will also scrimmage, giving the coaches a chance to continue developing players who don’t see much play time on game day.
Texas State will strap the pads back on Friday, its heaviest workload of the week. Spavital said he wants the team as loose as possible heading into the game the next day.
“That's the whole deal about how Olympic track guys, you know, 24 hours before they run like the 100-meter dash, they gotta try to get their bodies moving at a similar pace of around 90-100 percent.” Spavital said. “So that's why we crank it up with them on Fridays. And then we get out of here and we travel.”
Spavital said the players are still getting used to the schedule, as well as some of his assistant coaches, but thinks the intensity will increase once the team lasers in on its game plan for the Aggies.
“This week has been different. We're adjusting to it and I actually kind of like how Coach Spav has got this week going because it's going to prepare us for next week,” senior running back Anthony D. Taylor said. “So it's going to make everything go smoother with everything and I like it. I like discovering what he has planned for us.”
Texas State bumped its schedule up two days for the mock week, which began on Friday rather than Sunday, to accomodate for playing Texas A&M on a Thursday. Spavital will put the team through a mock game this Thursday, walking through where and when the players will tape up, stretch and run through the tunnel onto the field at Bobcat Stadium.
The maroon and gold’s first official game week begins this Friday. The Bobcats will take on the Aggies in College Station six days later at 7:30 p.m. With single-digit days left to the start of the 2019 season, Spavital knows he’ll need his team prepared.
“People don't really think about it, but there has to be a science and the down-to-the-minute thing for everything you do on game day,” Spavital said. “So it's been great for everybody just to kind of figure this whole thing out.”