Things learned, observed around Robert D. Edgren football camp
Published: August 16, 2012
-- It couldn’t have looked worse for new Robert D. Edgren football coach Blaine Miller when he sat down to his first meeting with players … and only nine showed.
-- Fallout from last season, when the Eagles almost self-destructed in October when their chance at Japan’s berth in the Far East Division II title game evaporated with a loss to Zama in late September.
-- Now, there’s four times the number of players who were at that first meeting, suited up and on the practice field.
-- Thank some serious recruiting by the team’s holdovers, juniors Tristan Jefferson and Louis Murphy, among others.
-- And what a practice field. Field turf now graces Misawa Air Base’s historic Hillside Stadium.
-- Guess all they’d need to do is rip up the bleachers and light poles from Eagles Field next door, move them to Hillside and Edgren could join every other team in Japan which has or soon will have field turf.
-- Those practices move. Everything is scripted out in advance, and the players hustle from drill station to drill station.
-- Um, how about some '70s music over that bullhorn?
-- Like all football teams, they’re working hard in the summer heat, but the attitude has changed. They really look like they’re having fun.
-- And not just on the field. One early morning, the team gathered outside the front gate in the base’s entertainment district and picked up 75 bags of trash. Without being asked. They just did it.
-- Just hope this crosses over deep into the season. They open at home to Yokota on Aug. 24; coaches and players say they wouldn’t have it any other way. Good gauge to see where they stand.