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af2 football mini-camp story

Discussion in 'Writers' Workshop' started by bballscribe, Mar 21, 2007.

  1. bballscribe

    bballscribe Member

    This is the first major story of mini-camp of an af2 team I'm covering. It's my first beat, so any critique would be greatly appreciated.


    Forty-nine players were invited to the Texas Copperheads' three-day mini-camp last weekend.

    The dreams and hopes of nineteen were squashed in that same amount of time.

    The Copperheads will take 30 players into this week's training camp, but if the talent from last weekend is any indication, head coach Bryan Blake will have a lot to work with.

    "We cut the obvious ones," Blake said. "But there's a lot of good ones. It was a lot easier (to make cuts) last year."

    The tension was thick on Friday, the first day of camp, but as the weekend wore on, players loosened up and began to relax, joking with each other and offering each other encouragement towards a common dream.

    "They were very quiet and nervous on Friday," Blake said. "Jobs are on the line."

    Amongst the 49 invitees were 14 defensive backs, four quarterbacks and two fullbacks.

    If the weekend showed any promise, it was on the offensive side of the ball. The Copperheads have talented competition at the quarterback position.

    Rookie Tony Eckert (6-2, 210; SMU) was brilliant, displaying a smooth long ball and a youthful exuberance needed at the spot.

    He looks to be the heavy favorite for the starting position, with veteran Damone Scott (6-2, 215; California St-Northridge) offering experience and poise as a backup.

    While others were too consumed with their own play, Scott spent time tutoring receivers and other quarterbacks, lending a helping hand wherever he could.

    The Copperheads are also stacked at the receiver slots.

    Jason Deml-who played on the Katy team last season-will likely be the primary receiver, using his height, length and athleticism to grab any ball within his area code.

    He was a fan favorite and team go-to player last season, and it looks like that will be the case in northwest Houston as well.

    Another pleasant surprise was the play of former UCLA fullback Pat Norton. Norton dropped few passes and showed great elusiveness and agility out of the backfield.

    "I'm just trying to have a good time," he said following Saturday's session. "There will always be nerves, but if you're not nervous, then you shouldn't be playing."

    Assistant head coach Ed Biles said the team will carry only two quarterbacks this season. Twenty-two will be allotted for the season, and with eight apiece going towards each side of the ball (not including the kicker), that leaves only five backup slots available.

    "Balance is extremely important," Biles said. "One player may be more athletic and a better talent than another, but if that other player is versatile and can play more positions, he'll make the team."

    Overall, it was a successful weekend for the Copperheads.

    Competition will liven within the next few weeks as the April 6 opening game approaches quickly, but the tedious aspect is done.

    "The mini-camp isn't about football as much as it is about evaluating talent," Biles said. "We want to cut down as much as we can. We're looking for the bad apples of the bunch."
  2. the_rookie

    the_rookie Member

    "The dreams and hopes of nineteen were squashed in that same amount of time."

    19. :D
  3. God bless the AF2...some of them actually think they can still make the NFL. It's cute, since most would have to buy a ticket to get to the CFL.


    Problem areas in italics, my comments in bold.

    Eventually, as you establish yourself, you can slip a bit of opinion in. You are the beat writer, after all. But, for now, write them straight. At least until you have watched a couple games and have a better idea of where their talent really stands. Honestly...you really do have NO IDEA right now. AF2 or not, these guys have all played at a fairly high level. Of course they are going to look good to you when you don’t have anything to compare them with.
  4. bballscribe

    bballscribe Member

    ^^^ appreciate the help, man. I get your point about the opinion. Thanks again.
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