Tuesday, July 26, 2011

SPORTS>>Falcons ready to work

Leader sports editor

North Pulaski had its first day of summer workouts under new coach Teodis Ingram on Monday, and the new coach seems to have set a spark into the squad.

There were 22 athletes at the opening workout. While that’s a small number in comparison with other programs similar in size to North Pulaski, it’s a good number in comparison to summer workouts at NP in the past.

The best thing about day one for Ingram, though, was the effort.

“I’ve been 28 years in this business, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen the kind of effort on the first day that I got today,” Ingram said.

On the agenda for day one was speed tests and conditioning work. Ingram recognized that his bunch is not in shape, but believes it will be in shape, based on the effort he saw.

“I think at some point you’ve got to push ‘em and see what they’re made of,” Ingram said. “We pushed ‘em just a little bit today and I really liked what I saw from them. For a lot of these guys, it’s the first time they’ve ever had a pre-practice session, but they came out here and worked through it.”

Ingram has held lots of meetings over the summer to try and help players, parents and the community understand what he’s about, his objectives, his expectations and his plan of action.

He has also been active at Northwood, NPHS’s feeder school.

“You have to sell a whole program if you want to be successful,” Ingram said in an interview earlier this summer.

The feedback he’s received in and from these meetings and other efforts has been positive.

He said in June that a unified North Pulaski/Northwood program and community support will pay off on the playing field. It may be that a small sign of that came out on Monday.

“Based on the effort I saw today, I think we’ve got a bunch of kids out here who want to do things the right way. With some of the things they’ve been through you know, I just think maybe they don’t really know what that looks like. But they’re out here, they’re working, they’re not griping and they’re learning about giving to their teammates. I’m really pleased with today.”