On a recent early foggy morning at Coast Union High School’s weight room, a dozen Broncos football players — with loud rock music blasting, free weights banging and clanking and an occasional “grunt” — were practicing resistance training in preparation for the upcoming season.
Players worked out under the watchful eyes of offensive coordinator Charlie Casale, head coach Andrew Crosby and assistant coach (and weight room supervisor) Trevor Near.
“The big four: the bench press, the clean, the squat and the lift,” Near said. “We workout Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and today the concentration is on legs.”
The assistant coach, whose responsibilities focus on special teams, running backs on offense and linebackers on defense, insists that besides weight training and conditioning, he is charged with “keeping things fresh.”
“We are trying to do new things and never making things boring,” Near said over the clatter of weights being slammed and student athletes’ vocal exuberance.
Among the “fresh” approaches being instituted are safe strategies for tackling.
Near attended a coach’s clinic in San Francisco in February and learned “20 tackling drills” to institute when the team is again allowed to engage in full practices in August.
Crosby, meanwhile, has high expectations for seniors Spencer Magnuson and Emany Plasencia.
“They have shown more maturity during our spring/summer workouts by holding other players accountable on the field,” Crosby said. “We expect the two seniors will continue to lead as an example in terms of drive, work ethic and determination.”
Magnuson, a three-year standout player on both sides of the ball, will play tackle on defense and center on offense. Plasencia, an experienced and talented quarterback, also plays linebacker and safety on defense and is a nationally ranked kicker, Crosby said.
Coast Union’s first game is a 7 p.m. home tilt Aug. 30 against Laguna Blanca of Santa Barbara. Of course, Broncos coaches believe the early morning weight training sessions will result in healthier student athletes with fewer injuries as the season moves along.