GRAMBLING, La. – The Grambling State University football program burst out of the gates and hit the ground running hard Saturday morning as the G-Men opened preseason practice in preparation for the start of the 2021 fall football season.
The sense of urgency and intensity flowing through the air at the GSU practice field was almost palpable, just the way GSU head coach Broderick Fobbs wants it to be.
“It has to be the way if you want to be a winner,” Fobbs said. “You have to have a sense of urgency in everything you do. You have to be passionate in everything you do, be it studying, practicing or playing in a game. That’s what creates intensity and helps build focus — focus on all the little things that work together to create proper execution and a winning effort on the field.”
Fobbs admits his Tigers do have an advantage this preseason after spending the summer working out as a team under new protocols put in place to make things better for college football teams during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. That previous work earlier this summer resulted in one of the crisper and more productive opening preseason practices for the Tigers ever.
“Truth be told, we owe all of that to our administration,” Fobbs said. “Our administration did the work and did everything that needed to be done in order to make sure that our kids could be here for the summer and make sure that we get a really strong 18 weeks of work in.
“This has allowed us to really know each other and that has a lot to do with the cohesiveness you see. When you know who you’re playing beside and you know everything that you’re doing, it gives you a comfort level about how to play the game. We spent a lot of time together this summer. We had barbecues, cookouts, swimming pool parties, and we did a lot of work. We lifted weights, we ran, we conditioned and we went through ‘punishments’ together. It was one of those deals where it was a really good summer for us.”
During Grambling’s opening preseason workout, it looked like that good summer could transfer to the practice field as the Tigers work toward the kickoff of the 2021 season..
“Our players are ready to go,” Fobbs said. “We just have to continue to grow and kind of ease into this thing. The game has changed a lot now. When you look at the state of the conference, everybody’s pretty much evenly matched. So what it’s really about is making sure you stay healthy while also executing the plan you have in place. Our practices have gone toward that mindset of making sure we keep everybody healthy, but also getting our work in so we can be sharp when we get ready to play.”
Fobbs said the fact his team has been together all summer should help kind of “speed up” the initial conditioning, acclimation and team-building process that in the past has traditionally been part of early preseason practices.
“What that has done is eliminate those steps we’re used to having to take in early August,” Fobbs said. “Normally in the past our focus at the start of camp is to try to get the players to be on one accord and together. Those universities that can keep their players together for the summer have had those advantages. But now there’s no molding process to start things off. We’re already molded. Now it’s about executing and knowing who the playmakers are so we can get the ball to them. That’s really what we’re doing right now, working on the plan, sharpening our tools and making sure that we’re ready to go with these next 24 days.”
Courtesy: GSU Athletics