I had some fun today, playing hookey from work and chasing down to Mankato for the final day of training camp that’s open to the public. The morning practice was rather uneventful, as the team was without pads and just going through drills that focused on basic technique.
Afterwards, we went to Tav on the Ave – a great sports bar in the city that was giving out coupons as we walked to the car – and had some good food while watching sports highlights on the largest HDTVs I’ve ever seen outside of a Best Buy. The food was pretty good too. I recommend getting the Cheesy Fries appetizer if you ever get the chance to visit.
Then we returned to campus and we traveled around to get a good view of the rubble that once was Gage Hall, and then wandered back towards the area that the afternoon practice was set to, tossing a football back and forth. It turned out that we happened to wander onto the practice field, just before the team started to come out and warm up, and just as we were getting to the other side a nasty security lady barked at us to get out immediately. We cordially complied, and then she locked the fence behind us…never making an attempt to blockade the area of the field that we actually got in through. But, I guess she’s not paid to be intelligent.
We got into the stands in time to find some great front row seats close to where a majority of the exciting action was going on for the remainder of practice. I did my best to get videos of as much as I could, and will post them later on. Some fun moments I can recall (not all were captured on video) include a one handed grab by Patterson as he broke past a DB 20+ yards downfield, then raced into the endzone; a sidearm throw to Peterson that was wrangled up from below his knees and then he scampered another 10~ish yards to paydirt; a reach-around catch from Wright as he was blanketed by Rhodes and falling to the ground; a few blasts from AP through the defense and downfield for a TD; an acrobatic catch from Jennings across the field for significant gain; and an interception thrown by Cassel to Sherels who took it from endzone-to-endzone.