Football skills for the aspiring superstar
Written by: kristian ferguson – sports writer
Back when I was younger, and weighed less, frankly, my parents provided me an awesome opportunity to work on my football skills. I was fresh-faced and had newly moved to Regina from Fort Qu’Appelle. I was always aware that being a bit of a bigger guy, I was pretty much a shoe-in to play football. I had already tried my hand at hockey, baseball, soccer and even golf, but none of them really piqued my interest.
It wasn’t until I had the opportunity to play with Regina Minor Football that I really began to enjoy sports, and after my first season, I was hungry to learn more and play harder.
With the help of my parents and a bit of Googling, we found a summer camp held by the Regina Rams to help develop and refine my football skills. A few restless months passed and, sure enough, it’s the midst of the summer and I’m sweating in football gear at the U of R. I spent the next four days being taught by people who really knew the game and really kicked my ass to get me pulling my literal and proverbial weight.
I knew how the game was played thanks to my previous season with the RMF, but I still consider the Rams Minor Football Camp to be where I truly learned to play the game. I learned how to block effectively; I learned how to really cement myself into the turf so that even if I was lined up against someone bigger or stronger, I still had a fighting chance. Being part of the offensive line, I sometimes felt a little left out. I had one of the least glamorous roles and would very often feel like my role was overlooked. No one sang my praises when our QB wasn’t getting sacked, but I definitely heard all the blame for when he did.
It wasn’t until the camp that, after playing with some Rams that were also in my position, I realized how important my part in the team was. Without all of the O-linemen, the little glass cannon we were protecting wouldn’t be able to throw a single pass. I was taught that there was more than just being the biggest guy on the field, and that there was just as much strategy in how to handle a blitz as there was in how to organize a pass play. For all of the not-so-good that came from the camp in the form of my twisted ankle on the very last day, there came a lot of positives, too.
Amidst all of the sore muscles and sweaty gear, I still look back on that camp and remember how good it felt to really be a part of a sport. It made me very glad to know that while I was writing this article and doing a bit of research, that the camp still goes on and, if the pattern holds true, the Rams should be announcing their 2016 dates relatively soon. Myself in particular would like to stress to anyone reading this that if you know someone of RMF age that is interested in learning more about football, maybe make them aware of the Rams Minor Football Camp. Who knows, they might have as much nostalgia as I do one day.