Pursuing Gridiron Glory

10 03 2010

March 10, 2010

This morning I had the pleasure of shooting a story with Kayla on three exceptional Grizzly football players pursuing their dreams to play at a professional level.  We attended the workout session of Griz stars Marc Mariani (wide receiver), Shann Schillinger (safety), and Shawn Lebsock (linebacker).

The trio was working out for Pro Day, which is just days away.  Throughout talking to the guys, in both formal interviews as well as off-the-record chatting, the guys made it clear that the specific training they’ve done for Pro Day is annoyingly different than the drills they’re used to for gamedays.  It’s more of a focus on specific athletic feats rather than the broader and perhaps more telling spectrum of what the guys are capable of seeing and reacting to out on the actual field.  With just one day of specific drills and precise measurements, Mariani said that it’s a lot of pressure to perform without error.  With that in mind, this morning’s routine consisted of drills to improve/maintain the players’ vertical jump, broad jump, bench press and 40 yard dash.

However, the drills of sprints, ladders, weights and jumps was helpful for shooting the story.  Tight shots of struggling during repetitions of weight lifting, legs exploding into nine-foot boadjumps, and bursts of sprinting speed make for perfect pops of natural sound in packages as well as cutaway transitions.

Aside from these players’ raw athelticizm, Missoula residents can’t help but wish them the best in their football endeavours as upstanding football players and people.  The three of them had nothing but respect and humbleness in regards to their coaches and teammates.

Pro Day will take place here in Missoula this coming Monday, March 15.  After that the prospects will have to wait until the NFL Draft, which starts April 22nd, to figure out their next step in their pursuits of gridiron glory.