Huskies to host ‘Night of Champions’

Mike ErwinJournal-Capital
Huskies to host ‘Night of Champions’

The second-annual Pawhuska Huskies “Night of Champions” will be held next Tuesday evening at Ormand Beach Memorial Stadium — signifying the conclusion of the summer football training program for junior high and high school players.

“We’ve had a very good summer,” Pawhuska Head Coach Bob Craig said Monday. “The turnout has been in the low-20 range for our high school players and it’s been even higher in our seventh- and eighth-grade programs.”

Over the past two months, Pawhuska High School varsity team members have been meeting from 6:30 to 8 a.m. twice or three times each week for SPA (Speed-Power-Agility) workout sessions. Later on those mornings, the seventh- and eighth-graders hold their SPA workouts from 8:30 to 10 a.m.

“They come in early,” Craig said. “That way, they’ve got the rest of their day open.”

The veteran coach said the summer training is designed to be used by all students involved in all PHS sports — not just football players.

“Mainly, we’re trying to make athletes,” said Craig, the second-year coach/athletic director of the Huskies said.

Craig said the results of this year’s program will be on display for the public at next Tuesday night’s event.

“We’re really pleased with what we have accomplished,” Craig said. “Sure, everybody is looking forward to finishing up the morning workouts — but they’re even more excited about getting ready for the fall football season.”

“Night of Champions” activities are set to get underway at 6 p.m. on July 22. The weight-lifting exhibitions and displays of running/jumping should last approximately one hour, the PHS coach said.

“It will be followed by a meeting of the Quarterback Club at 7 p.m.,” Craig added.

Craig encouraged all Huskie sports fans to become involved with the QB Club, which has a long history of supporting the school’s athletic programs. He is hoping for a large “Night of Champions” turnout.

“I’d like for everybody in town to be there with their friends,” he said. “We’re wanting to show these kids off and get everybody thinking about the season.”

The coach pointed out that the benefits from the summer SPA workouts will become even more apparent once the 2014 campaign kicks off.

Football practice for the 2014 high school season begins statewide on Monday, Aug. 11. Craig said fall practice times, which will be announced later, are to be discussed at the upcoming Quarterback Club meeting — as well as at a varsity parents meeting set at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 6.

Aug. 6 also is the date that football equipment will be checked out to both the varsity players and those at the junior-high level. That is to happen from 5:30-6:30 p.m. and will be followed by the meeting with varsity parents at 7 p.m. — all taking place at the varsity football locker room, according to the coach.

About a week before the new season begins, Craig will be actively involved in the All-State Games which are put on each summer during the Oklahoma Coaches Association’s annual convention and clinics. The week-long OCA-sponsored games are held at various Tulsa-area sports venues and feature top recently-graduated prep athletes from all around the state.

Craig served as vice president of the OCA last year. The veteran football coach will be installed as the president of thee organization during the Tulsa convention.