Archive for Thursday, June 2, 2005

Full house expected for summer KU football drills

June 2, 2005

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Another summer is here, and with it comes another flawless roll call for voluntary summer workouts for the Kansas University football team.

"Every single scholarship player has informed (strength) coach (Chris) Dawson and our coaching staff that they plan on being here," KU coach Mark Mangino said of the workouts, which will start Monday. "We've also got several walk-ons who will be here for the whole summer."

It's music to Mangino's ears, as KU looks to build its way back into bowl contention one squat rep, wind sprint and agility drill at a time. The 2005 season will kick off Sept. 3 against Florida Atlantic.

Kansas coaches can't require anyone to stick around during the summer months, but the players have taken it upon themselves to do so anyway, attracted by the spacious Anderson Family Strength Center and the mentoring of Dawson to help be in top shape by the start of two-a-days in August.

Also, Mangino said every incoming scholarship freshman would be in Lawrence for at least part of the summer, though some will go home briefly to participate in high school all-star games.

Others will be taking classes at KU to get a head start on their degrees through a new summer bridge program, which allows incoming freshmen to take six hours of classes the summer before starting full-time schooling in the fall.

"I think it's excellent," Mangino said of the participation.

The summer workouts are the second of two intense training sessions the Jayhawks grind through between seasons, but the focus for the upcoming workouts differs from the offseason workouts KU players went through from January through March.

In the winter, players focused on improving strength, speed and change of direction. Only about 30 percent of that training was conditioning-related.

Mangino said the summer workouts would be more devoted to the cardiovascular side of training - about 50 percent of the workouts.

"When you get to this summer program," Mangino said, "you want to get your kids in peak condition for two-a-days."

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