By Carol McCracken (Post # 680)
“Does anyone have any more questions?” shouted head coach, Taylor Krol, at the dozen or more women who had answered the team’s on-line call to attend a free football clinic at the gymnasium of East End Community School on the Hill. The women were sitting on benches lining one side of the hard-wood floor gym, listening intently to Coach Krol. Saturday’s clinic was advertised as an opportunity for rookies to come out and learn the fundamentals of football. It was a recruiting tool for the Maine Rebels.
Team owner and a linewoman Ruth Murphy told MHN.com prior to the practice that this is a rebuilding season. Last year was a loosing season. They are looking for new recruits to flesh out the squad. “It’s difficult because Maine is such a large state and people have to travel so much all over the state. Also, the media has expressed no interest in covering our games,” Murphy said, grimmacing. “That PR would help in recruiting players.” The season runs from April through May and does involve travel to places such as New Hampshaire, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey. One year the team carpooled to Montreal. According to Coach Krol the team has 100 traditional offensive plays that the team must learn. He also told the recruits that this year he was doing away with the offensive huddle; and he was not yet certain how plays would be called, but had ideas he talked about.
Following the information session, Coach Krol had the prospects run two laps around the gym. Then he and his defensive Coach, Mike, divided the group into two smaller groups – pressumably the line and the backfield players. Each group went through a work-out session intended to improve agility and strengthen the players muscles. Then followed a focus on fundamental skills these rookies needed to learn – like how to stand over the ball and not loose your balance.
Not all of the dozen or so who showed up for the clinic were rookies. Diana Duff, Cumberland, played last year as a receiver. For this practice, she was sidelined by a knee injury but it would not keep her from participating when the season begins. Last year’s quarterback retired so Duff and several others are trying to make the team as the new quarterback. Duff said she’s been inspired by her 9 year old son who plays football as well.
The team practices twice a week; usually on Tuesdays and Saturdays. And often in different places; Your Space in Gorham and sometimes the Portland Sports Complex. It’s expected that the Maine Rebels will practice again at EECS on January 22nd. At the end of Saturdays practice, it was not clear whether or not the team would be back practicing on the Hill tomorrow, Tuesday, due to scheduling and related matters.
The team is always looking for corporate sponsors so if this idea appeals to you, please get in touch with her at (207) 776-8979 or please visit www.southernmainerebels.com (Participats must be female and 18 years old or older.)