The Altus Bulldog football team traveled to Putnam City on Thursday to take part in a football camp put on by Putnam City Pirates Head Coach Preston Pearson.
The camp, changed from the traditional three-day, ran only two days this time around. Bulldogs Head Coach Todd Vargas felt like the past three-day camps really wore the kids out and made them more susceptible to injury. The length, however, was not the only thing different. The past two years, the Bulldogs have traveled to Mustang to take part in a much larger camp, which also seemed to be much more physical, but Vargas wanted a change of pace.
“Mustang is a bigger camp,” Vargas said. “In Putnam City there were only six teams and it had less contact and quick whistles. It was definitely more controlled and we felt like it suited us best this year.”
Having camp in Putnam City worked to the Bulldogs advantage. There was more structure and more of an opportunity for them to showcase some of the things they have been working on so far this summer. Putnam City, Edmond North and Yukon were representing Class 6A at the camp, while Altus, Del City and Piedmont were representing Class 5A.
It didn’t matter the class, the Bulldogs had a lot of success offensively and defensively against the teams they were played.
The Bulldogs learned that everything they did in Spring ball could be executed well against live teams, and that got all the players and coaches excited for what is to come this season.
But before the fall season comes Summer Pride — a summer-long program that runs Monday through Thursday and kicks off at 6:30 a.m. The Bulldog’s hit the weights and the practice field and work on strength, speed and discipline for two intense hours. So far, it has started out well. This morning there was full attendance. Vargas said that a lot of people think football is just August through December, but don’t realize the preparation put forth by coaches and players outside of those months.
“These kids clock it. They’re going eight hours a week,” Vargas said. “They have great attitudes, are giving great effort and they’re always willing to compete.”
What’s next for this Altus Bulldogs football team?
Every Tuesday this month, the team will travel to Lawton and take part in a seven-on-seven passing league that begins 10 a.m. Teams expected to participate are Lawton Ike, Frederick and Elgin. Vargas said it is a great opportunity for the kids to play some football throughout the month of June.
July 6-7, Vargas is bringing in flexbone offense expert Kenny Wheaton as part of the Bulldog’s tune-up camp. Wheaton will fine tune the Bulldog’s offense, check it for cracks and steer the players and coaches in the right direction. It gives the them a chance to get dialed-in before the season begins in August.
Things are beginning to heat up in Bulldog nation as they inch closer to the start of football season and nobody is more excited than this Altus Bulldog football team and the coaches who put it all together.
Reach Ryan Lewis at 580-482-1221 ext. 2076