Aug. 8, 2007
CINCINNATI-- The University of Cincinnati football squad conducted its first two-a-day workouts of the 2007 preseason in intense weather at Nippert Stadium. Head coach Brian Kelly's squad conducted a vigorous morning practice that was highlighted by 20 minutes of 11 vs. 11 action, while the evening workout was fast-moving through plenty of action.
"After five days of acclimatization, we wanted to put a little bit more intensity into what we did today," stated Kelly. "We worked on playing with great speed, third and long situations, and getting the ball out of the quarterback's hands quickly. This evening was about intensity with repetition. This morning, we slowed things down and created an intense environment. I wanted to see how kids were going to handle themselves when they had a little pressure on them."
With daytime temperatures threatening to reach triple digits, UC started its second practice at 7:05 p.m. with shadows cast over three-quarters of Nippert Stadium. Just over an hour into the evening's activities, the Bearcats cleared the field and went to the field-level lockeroom area for safety concerns after a lightning burst on the horizon. They returned to practice after it was declared safe.
Originally slated to conduct the second practice at 3:05 p.m., Kelly consulted with his sports medicine staff and moved the workout to later in the evening. Consideration of the daytime heat that threatened to reach triple-digits was a factor.
"Right now we're using 3,000 pounds of ice each practice," said football athletic trainer Bob Mangine. "Part of our job is to keep the team adequately hydrated. We fill four 10-gallon water stations, 18 times each, so we're going through 720 gallons of water each practice."
A landmark of Nippert Stadium's environment this preseason has been a small pool designed for players to cool off quickly after practice.
Mangine said, "The objective of the cool-down pool is to bring heart rate down, blood pressure down to where it should be, and get the blood pushed back into the core system. Ultimately, it helps individuals recover faster, so they can get a break and be effective in the next practice."
Mangine and his team consult with the coaching staff before, during and after each on-the-field session.
"Coach Kelly is great to work with in terms of allowing us to give the kids a little break during practice," stated Mangine. "His concern is for the individual student-athlete's welfare. The team has responded well to those breaks."
The Bearcats are scheduled for a single practice at Nippert Stadium on Thursday, beginning at 9:05 a.m.