PROVO — The BYU football team will put the “camp” in spring camp this weekend.
The Cougars will be taking buses to southern Utah and then practice at Dixie High School Friday afternoon. They’ll also be roughing it in the great outdoors for two nights.
“We’re in tents, yeah,” said offensive coordinator Ty Detmer. “We get to go to the lake Saturday and let the guys have some fun. It’s a great team bonding experience for everybody. They get to see the coaches in a relaxed setting It will be a great time. We’re all in. We’ll all be together. It’s a team trip. Nobody’s staying in hotels.”
BYU is holding an open practice at Dixie High and a Fan Fest Friday from 3-5:30 p.m. The team will camp for two nights and return to Provo Sunday afternoon.
“I’m excited about that. It will be some time for us as players and coaches to relax away from football and have some fun with the players,” said assistant head coach Ed Lamb, who said this trip could become an annual event. “We have a lot of fans in the southern part of the state. To go down there and invite them out to practice, I’m anxious to see what the turnout is like.”
This road trip was Lamb’s brainchild. He used to take his team camping when he was the head coach at Southern Utah and when Lamb pitched it to coach Kalani Sitake, he embraced the idea.
During fall camp last August, the team had an outdoor team activity near Heber City.
“It was awesome,” said wide receivers coach Ben Cahoon. “The players begged Kalani to do it again. It’s great. Some of these guys have never camped before. They’ll be setting up tents. There’s nothing like being out in the wilderness with your boys. It will be fun. And we’ll be able to show off the team to the southern Utah people. I think they’ll appreciate that.”
Lamb used to play the guitar in a band and Detmer said Lamb will bring his guitar to play around the campfire at nights.
“The guys enjoy each other’s company,” Detmer said. “It was a neat experience last year seeing those guys playing Monopoly and different games around the campfire and just hanging out.”
Detmer said the players pushed to stay two nights instead of just one on this trip.
Players and coaches expect to benefit from this journey to southern Utah.
“It’s a bonding experience,” Cahoon said.
NFL GUYS: Former Cougars Dennis Pitta (Baltimore Ravens) and Daniel Sorensen (Kansas City Chiefs) re-signed with their respective NFL teams recently. That’s positive news for the program.
“It’s exciting for the guys here, knowing the possibilities there,” Detmer said. “For recruits to know that they can make it and have an NFL career if it works out for them. I think everybody around the program is excited for those guys. We love to see our guys have success and achieve all of their goals and dreams. We love to have them around when they’re here and we always support them when they’re out playing.”
WEDNESDAY’S PRACTICE: What was Detmer’s evaluation of Wednesday’s practice? “We could be a little sharper up front. We weren’t as tight in the run game as we’d like to see,” he said. “A lot of that changes when you’re full contact. We could be a little cleaner. We threw some new formations and a few wrinkles (Wednesday) before we head to St. George Friday As coaches, we’re constantly watching and trying to figure out where the weaknesses are and how we can strengthen those and accentuate the positive.”