Tigers adjusting to summer routine
By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY
The Troup Tigers are into the routine.
Last week, the Troup football players began summer conditioning after they were given clearance to return to work following a nearly three-month shutdown because of the coronavirus.
After so much time off the players had to re-adjust to being pushed physically and mentally, but head coach Tanner Glisson believes they’re up to speed nearly two weeks into summer workouts.
“We’re starting to catch our groove a little bit with conditioning,” Glisson said. “So I think next week we’ll still lift and do some things, but we’ll get into some more football-specific drills. We’ll start getting into some footwork stuff and different things.”
It helps that, beginning on Monday, the players will be able to use a football for the first time.
During the first two weeks of conditioning, players have been prohibited from using any football-related equipment, including balls.
On Wednesday, the Georgia High School Association issued a revision to its guidelines which allows the use of footballs, greatly increasing what teams will be able to do.
For the rest of this week the Tigers will continue to work on conditioning, both of the physical and mental variety.
“One thing that I think really gets under-rated in all this, people want to talk about the physical conditioning, but a lot of it is mental,” Glisson said. “They haven’t been pushed for three months. They’ve been playing video games, and haven’t really been challenged mentally.
So that’s one thing we’ve got to work on.”
One of those players, senior Marquavious Kelley, said it’s nice to be back on campus with his teammates during a tumultuous time in the world.
“It’s been good,” Kelley said. “It’s been hard with everything going on the world. I felt safe once we got back here. We’re around people that we know, and trust.”
For Glisson and the other coaches, it has been a challenging time with so much going on in the world, including a virus that has forced everyone to make significant lifestyle adjustments.
“I’m going into my 22nd year, and now they’re asking high-school coaches, and pretty much all coaches, to be experts in the medical field, to be health-care providers, to be Xs and Os gurus, to be recruiting specialists, and educators,” Glisson said. “It’s tough.”
Glisson does appreciate the support he’s received from other coaches, including University of Memphis head coach Ryan Silverfield who he received a call from on Wednesday.
“He said we’re in the same fox hole,” Glisson said. “They’re dealing with the same stuff, especially with some of the social unrest going on. You have to be sensitive to those matters. There are so many things that are happening, and it’s changing very quickly.”
Troup will play two preseason games before opening the regular season on Aug. 21 against Harris County.