Wind, hail, and an early taste of Chippewa football are just a few things that attendees of the CMU Spring football game experienced on Saturday, April 13th in Kelly/Shorts Stadium. As the team was separated into the maroon team and gold team, coach Enos and the Chippewas gave football fans an early glimpse of their 2013-2014 football team.
Now, what exactly is the spring game? And what purpose does it serve? The spring game may not seem like a huge deal, but it serves as a measuring stick for their team. Throughout spring games, coaches often place their players in game situational plays such as a 3rd down and long, or 3rd down and short.
In this year’s spring game, the Chips weren’t only challenged with situations by coach Enos, but also by Mother Nature. As the hailstorm began, the ball became harder to catch, the tackles began to sting a bit more, and the football field turned white.
As these conditions worsened, the Chippewas faced their hardest situation of the game; the weather. The Chips will benefit greatly from the weather conditions because playing in harsh conditions forces players to go back to the fundamentals of the game, such as holding onto the ball tighter and finishing tackles.
Throughout the other situational plays, the players were tested by Enos and their respected positional coaches to determine how each player will react to different play-calling. Because the spring game is served as a measuring stick, each player is given an opportunity to play throughout the game and has equal opportunity to become a starter.
The spring game serves a crucial part in the Chippewa’s success for their upcoming season because it allows the coaches to determine what needs work, and who is most likely to obtain the starting position.
Spring games are also a necessity for the players. Similar to the coaches, the players learn what they need to work on over the summer, and what they must do to be named as a starter. Coaches also use the spring game to determine if the player is useful to the team, or if they need to be cut.
In college football, the players are constantly forced to be on top of their game if they wish to remain on the team. Although this may seem unfair to some, it keeps the players focused, and forces them to stay competitive throughout the entire the season rather than doing just enough to be on the team. The spring game sets the tone for the summer workouts, and plays a big role in the team’s success for their upcoming season.
Although the weather wasn’t the best from the spectators point of view, Kelly/Shorts Stadium was packed with the Chippewa’s dedicated fans, eager to begin another season. The Little Caesars Pizza Bowl champions still have plenty of work to do before next fall, but looked to be in good shape during this year’s spring game.
FIRE UP CHIPS!