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Football mothers take to the trials

August 08, 2012

Every great man has a woman behind him and the mothers of the middle school football players adhere to the saying. Photo by O. Shumaker
By Olivia Shumaker

Review Intern

On July 31, the Scripps football field was as busy as before any game, but this time, it was the moms, rather than the boys, who were working their way through a football workout for Moms Camp.

"The Moms Camp was designed to get all the football moms together," said Sheri Rourke, a PEPP co-chair and varsity mom.

The Moms Camp is run through PEPP, the football booster club, to provide football moms from all teams an opportunity to learn what their sons are really doing on the field. The idea came about a few years ago, and was brought back after a one-year absence by popular demand and the request of varsity head coach Chris Bell.

"I so appreciate Chris coming to us and saying, 'You know, I'd really like to do this for the moms,'" said Charlotte Basso, a PEPP co-chair and varsity mom.

The camp, which was open to all moms, sisters, and friends of Dragon football players, was reformatted from its previous style, choosing to show the moms what a pre-game routine looks like for the team. Participants arrived at the teachers' lounge for a six p.m. dinner, the way the teams do before each game. Bell gave a speech similar to the one he gives the varsity players each Friday night during the season, and then instructed the moms to wish each other good luck the way the players always do—by forming a line and having them hug each other. Then the moms had a team dinner of sorts before heading down to the Scripps field for warm ups.

"My favorite part is always being on the field with some of the varsity players, because they think, 'Old ladies on the field,'" said Rourke. "I like to watch the eyebrows raise as somebody runs a little faster than they think they can or can move a little faster than they think they can."

The players took their moms through running and a typical warm up, which can include a wide variety of exercises and even more running. Afterwards, the moms were brought to the Scripps locker room before doing the team march through the parking lot, before being able to, "go through the tunnel, come out on the field and learn their hoorah chant," said Basso.

"The moms tried really hard and I think they understand more how much goes into being a football player," said Durham Basso, a senior on the varsity team.

Ultimately, the goal of the camp was to show the moms what the Dragon football program entails, and help them cheer with a greater idea of what their player is doing besides throwing, catching, and tackling the football. The camp brought moms from different teams closer, allowing varsity moms to share with freshmen and junior varsity moms what will come as they progress in the program and giving newer moms the opportunity to make friends with other moms in PEPP. In the end, the camp helped strengthen the moms' support of their players, strengthening the football program with a sense of community.

"It's just a really great coming together. For me, it's the season starting," said Charlotte Basso. "It's Dragon season now."