While official team practice doesn't begin until October, we started our individual on-court workouts last Wednesday. During the month of September, NCAA rules permit us to work with our players on the court for a maximum of two hours per week. Our September on-court workouts will focus on defensive fundamentals.
A championship season starts with championship defense. Lumberjack Defense is built on a foundation of effort, technique, intelligence, and teamwork. While technique, intelligence, and teamwork are imperative, effort is first and foremost. Our defense, regardless of how technically sound, will only be as good as the effort expended by the individuals within the defense. Defensive effort requires sweat, guts, heart, courage, desire, discipline, determination, and hard work. And you know what that means . . .
Every morning, before stepping onto the basketball court, our players step onto the track at Lumberjack Stadium for a conditioning workout designed by assistant coach, Robyne Bostick. Our first week of workouts included the mile run, 50- and 100-meter sprints, and 400-meter sprints. While the workouts have been challenging, our players have embraced each one with great effort, grit, and a championship spirit.
On August 15th, NAU Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics, Lisa Campos, announced the opening of the new volleyball and basketball offices. We are now located in the Skydome, on the east side third floor. If you are ever in the neighborhood, please feel free to stop in for an official tour. Special thanks to Dr. Campos and all who worked so hard on our beautiful new digs!
COFFEE CAKE WEDNESDAY
Last Wednesday, to christen our new offices and celebrate the first day of school, the volleyball, men's basketball, and the women's basketball staffs hosted our first "Coffee Cake Wednesday" for the athletic department. Congratulations to assistant men's basketball coach Matt Dunn, who took home the Blue Ribbon in the "I Didn't Even Use a Recipe" category. First Place in the "Old Family Recipe" category went to Aunt Mary's Blueberry Buckle.
A big congrats and thank you to NAU Soccer! They are off to a great start (3-0-1), AND they have volunteered to host "Fruit Cake Friday" in the near future. Please send me your best fruit cake recipes and I will forward them to soccer coach, Andre Luciano.
HAVE BASKETBALLS, WILL TRAVEL
Last Thursday, my staff and I jumped into a van with basketballs and supplies, and hit the road to spend the day with some school children on the Hopi Reservation. NAU Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics, Lisa Campos, led a contingent of NAU coaches on a 125 mile road trip to First Mesa Elementary School in Polacca, Ariz. to conduct a clinic. When we arrived at the school gym, we were greeted by excitement, enthusiasm, and about 300 smiling faces. In addition to teaching basketball fundamentals, we talked about the importance of good nutrition, staying active, dreaming big, and going to college. Fun times for all!
Our lone senior, Amanda Frost (Riverside, CA) shares her thoughts on our first week of workouts: "The team has shocked me with all their improvement and dedication."
Our goals for the 2013-2014 season:
Win the Big Sky Championship,
Maintain a team GPA of 3.0 or higher,
Perform 150 hours of community service.
Freshman Catelyn Preston (Oregon City, OR) keeps tabs on important dates and numbers for our program. Drumroll please . . .
Days until our first day of practice (October 3rd) = 30
Days until our home opener (Hawaii, November 10th) = 67
Days until semester grades are posted = 112
Days until the Big Sky Championship = 155
Hours of community service performed to date = 52
RAVEN AND ERIKKA'S QUOTE OF THE WEEK
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