Obviously, there are reasons for Coach Rich Rodriguez to close his practices and keep all inquiring minds far, far away from what it is that happens those three hours a day at Mountaineer Field.
I can see the stadium from my home and sometimes I wonder how close I could get before I hear the sniper cock his rifle. I am instead left with these visions of what goes on that must be protected. It’s probably boring, if not for the occasional and inevitable fight among teammates or eruption from a coach, andÂ I doubt it’s something I’d really want to have the privilege of attending and, of course, covering.
Still, that no one is allowed in natually lets the imagination wander and many believe there is something mystical going on there. I’d like to think “Flight of the Bumblebee” is blaring over the speakers as the Mountaineers practice an array of trick plays and wacky formations Rodriguez wants no one to see so when he eventually pulls one out, it catches everyone by surprise.
Well, the perception isn’t too far from the reality. Rodriguez opened the blinds Tuesday when he revealed a little about what happens in practice, and, to be honest, it sounds like fun.
“We actually had a part of practice a couple weeks ago because poor Owen (Schmitt), it seems like when he scores a touchdown, nobody gives him a high-five. He looks lost out there. So we let him score a touchdown and everyone came over and gave him a high-five. We let Johnny Dingle get a sack and had the players go over and celebrate with him. We heard he high-fived an official at the Syracuse game because there were no teammates around him. I didn’t see it, but he’s caught a lot of grief since then.”