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Photo by Gerald Castillo

Spavital, Bobcats making it through, virtually

Texas State Football
Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Jake Spavital’s been logging a lot of hours on Zoom lately.

Him and his staff have been in contact with “around 60 schools,” piecing together a plan of how to stay organized while away from Bobcat Stadium. The Texas State head football coach feels like they’ve got a good grasp on everything now. But it’s tedious work.

“You don't want to leave anybody out,” Spavital said. “Like on simple tasks that you could, you know, just yell across the hallway and be like, ‘Hey, Connor, Haleigh, can you handle this?’ it actually takes a Zoom conference call and we have to see if we're capable of doing it or not.”

The meetings helped, though. When teams were allowed to start teleconferencing their players, the Bobcats were prepared.

“As a football coach, you plan for adversity,” Spavital said. “So the rules are changing nonstop. But you never know when this thing's going to end, so you gotta stay ready.”

The Texas State players have been broken up into groups — Spavital prefers not to hold a 140-person Zoom call — and are staying in contact with coaches on a daily basis. They’ve been sent workouts they can opt to do while social distancing.

The difficult part, though, is that there’s no way to tell if anyone is actually following through on them.

“It's a daily thing that happens in terms of the rules that we can and can't do. You know, and that's updating daily,” Spavital said. “You can't do anything workout-related with them, but we're sending them workouts and you know, if they do and they do them, great. You know, we can't hold them accountable with that, just based off the rules of the NCAA. But really, we're just trying to make sure that our kids are safe and have the resources necessary to do their academics.”

Spavital said he liked the strides that the team was making through the first five practices of spring training before the rest of the semester was canceled. But he’s still confident the team can push themselves to where they want to go next season.

“You would like to get 10 more practices in. I don't know how that's gonna be,” Spavital said. “you know, they're young guys that, when you do offseason workouts, you can really see the transformation of these kids because they come in as 18-year-old kids and you just see them transform and they get bigger and faster and stronger and nutrition and all that. It's just, it's important for these kids and in the time of their lives.

“I think we're handling it the best we can. You know, we've just got to make sure that we're passing our classes and continuing to stay busy. But I do think that we were making good strides and were in a pretty good spot. But again, football is based on adversity and how you handle it. And you know, no matter what, we still want to have the same results as what our goals are as a team and we need to just make sure that we're maximizing every opportunity we can.”

The Bobcats will get to work eventually. But until then, Spavital will have to settle for countless Zoom meetings.

“It sucks,”Spavital said. “I miss those guys, man.”

San Marcos Record

(512) 392-2458
P.O. Box 1109, San Marcos, TX 78666