CAPTION: Manny Ortiz (left), Chris Garcia and Maverick Lawson lead the Marble Falls linemen through an agility drill of stepping over hurdles that helps them loosen hips and be more flexible so they can better turn. Staff photo by Jennifer Fierro
After a two-week break, the Marble Falls Mustangs and Lady Mustangs returned to the high school July 10-14 before the summer heat set in to resume summer strength and conditioning workouts under the watchful eyes of strength and conditioning coach Richard Scales and track and field head coach Austin Silva.
Observing about 60 Mustangs going through speed, agility and power drills was athletic director and football head coach Brian Herman, who was pleased with what he saw, though like most coaches, he is always hoping for more.
“As a coach, you’re never happy unless it’s 100 percent, and I understand life gets in the way sometimes,” he said.
The coaches’ goal each summer is to schedule the summer sessions during a time they believe allows for most athletes to attend and beat the Texas heat at the same time. So by 8 a.m., the athletes were on the field at Mustang Stadium where the linemen were at one station, the skill players at another, and underclassmen at a third.
The athletes’ efforts were evident in their clothing that was soaking wet by the time they finished and went to the weight room for the second part of the workout. The only stoppage came when they went to water stations to stay hydrated.
Herman was encouraged by what he is seeing, adding the football players also are working on sport-specific drills to get them ready for fall training camp that begins July 31 and the 2023 season.
“I’m very encouraged,” he said. “We have another 50 (Marble Falls) middle school athletes who are in the weight room. We have over a hundred kids putting in the work to be better for their sport. We do our football drills before 7 a.m.”
One key emphasis among football coaches is the mindset of the players. They used the offseason to reflect, discuss and apply the lessons from the 2022 season to get better results in 2023. Coaches have noted the athletes are highly motivated to get the program back to where it was in 2020 and 2021. That’s when the Mustangs were in the playoffs.
“It was a learning experience,” Herman said of the 2022 season. “The guys have learned a lot. I like what I’m seeing. I like the effort.”
As the players enjoyed one more water break before heading to the weight room with Herman in toe, he had one message for families whose athletes may not be participating in the workouts.
“Send us your kids,” he said. “We’ll make all our kids better. We want them all to get better.”
Fall training camps for football and volleyball begin Monday, July 31. Cross county has been conducting official workouts all summer.
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