Muskie football squad holding spring camp

The Muskie football program is midway through its spring camp being held at Fort High this week.
Head coach Bob Swing said the camp, which began Sunday and runs through tomorrow night, is important because it’s the last time the coaches can work with the players before the league-mandated summer break.
“It’s the last week we can work with the kids before the fall,” he explained.
The Winnipeg High School Football League does not allow coaches to hold formal practices between June 30 and Aug. 21.
Swing said the camp provides the coaches with an opportunity to get their first look at new players who are thinking of joining the team in the fall, as well as giving the rookies a taste of what they can expect.
“It’s a chance to work with the Grade 9s and get their fears out,” he remarked.
J. Rains is entering Grade 9 at Fort High this fall and is looking forward to playing for the black-and-gold.
“I’ve always liked football,” he said. “I saw a lot of the [Muskie] games last season.”
Rains also said he thought the spring camp was a great idea because it gives the coaches a leg up in preparing for the upcoming season.
“It gives the coaches a chance to see who can play what [position] and get ready for the season,” he reasoned.
Meanwhile, for his part, Rains is just hoping to learn as much as he can. “I just want to improve any way I can,” he said.
The coaches weren’t the only ones watching the rookies at practice. Returning players like fourth-year strong safety Matt Badiuk also were eager to see how they performed.
“I think we have some strong guys coming out,” Badiuk said. “We’ve got some receivers and some linemen.
“I’m looking forward to the season. I think we’re going to have a good team,” he added.
In addition to evaluating the rookies, the spring camp also provides the coaching staff the chance to gauge the progress of the returning players.
So far, Swing has liked what he’s seen.
“The kids have definitely gotten bigger, faster, stronger,” he said of the returning players who participated in the camp’s first couple of practices.
The Muskie spring camp has been well attended thus far, with just over 20 players—roughly 10 of which are rookies—coming out to the practices both Sunday and Monday.
Players are put through a series of stretches and basic movement drills to begin practice before being divided up into two groups: linemen and skilled position players.
The two individual groups then work on basic positional skills before coming back together to run some plays.
Practice then wraps up with a fun game of two-hand touch.
While the drills are basic, Swing said they help to evaluate the players in three vital areas: fitness level, athleticism, and leadership.
The spring football camp continues today and tomorrow from 6-8:30 p.m. at Muskie Field.
Any players thinking about possibly trying out for the team in the fall are urged to attend.
In related news, the Muskie Touchdown Booster Club is selling raffle tickets on a package to attend the Grey Cup in Winnipeg on Sunday, Nov. 19.
The prize—valued at $1,000—includes two tickets (Sec. A, Row 23), hotel accommodations for that night, as well as $400 in spending money.
The draw will be held Oct. 13 (yes, that’s a Friday) at 1 p.m. at Fort Frances High School.
Only 1,000 tickets are being sold, which cost $10 each.
Tickets can be purchased at various locations around town or from editor Mike Behan at the Fort Frances Times office.