MISSOULA/BOZEMAN – It’s hard to get Bobcats and Grizzlies to agree on anything. Both teams are wrapping up spring football drills and the head coaches have much different approaches to this time of the year.
Cats head coach Jeff Choate was very out-spoken about his distaste for spring. MSU held the Sonny Holland Classic this past weekend, and Choate said after that he was just glad no one got seriously hurt. He feels the most serious work is done in the summer to get ready for the fall, and said about the spring, “I’m glad it’s over.”
Meanwhile, Griz head coach Bobby Hauck plans to put his team through plenty of plays in the Grizzlies’ upcoming spring game in Missoula. He feels the 15 practices allowed by the NCAA are vital to building a successful squad.
“It shows you how diverse opinion is in our profession,” said Hauck when told about Choate’s opinion. “I love spring ball. It’s my favorite time of the year. You get to go out and coach your guys, you work the young guys, they get to play live. You see vast improvement as compared to other times of the year. I don’t know how you get any better at football without playing it. Anytime you are doing something athletic there is a chance you can get banged up or injured. So I think you just go play.”
The contrast in approaches will be very visible this weekend. The Cats will head to Great Falls for the Triangle Classic. They will hold a banquet and a kids clinic, but will not scrimmage or practice.
The Griz will wrap up the month with their annual spring game at 1:00 on Saturday in Missoula. Hauck plans to run four ten-minute quarters of full contact, game-like action.