Football team kicks off season with midnight practice

More stories from Marco Aramburu


Faye Smith

Offensive line coach James Pfannenstiel runs pass defense drills.

Under the Kansas State High School Activity Association (KSHSAA) regulations for 2018, fall sports teams were not legally allowed to begin practices until Aug. 13. The football team wasted no time and therefore the second annual midnight practice went underway, finishing at 2 a.m. on Monday. The decision to hold the midnight practice comes from the idea that while the other teams sleep, the Railers take the first chance to improve.  

In addition to teams refraining from practice until Aug. 13 a new  KSHSAA regulation requires that there be no two-a-day practices. This way instead of having a physical practice later that day, they focused more on film previewing.

To begin the practice Head Football Coach Chris Jaax speaks about the importance of seizing the field, which had an impact on the team members.

Seizing the field means that we need to establish a dominant position as a team. We can’t be focused on who we are playing- their size, their number- we just have to focus on ourselves and being dominate ourselves,” senior Matt Seirer said.

This being Serier’s second time participating in the midnight practice, Seirer said he enjoys the practice because he it helps the team breakout of their mold and bring a sense of energy that helps the players in being more productive.

Upon freshman Clayton Smith’s first time participating in the practice, Smith said he enjoyed the aspect that while other teams were sleeping, the Railers were working. Which also embodies the aspect of seizing the field, and creating energy.

“It’s a lot about energy, and we have to bring energy and commitment to the field,  all of that it reflects how we play because if we go in without any energy, we are going to be outplayed,” Smith said.

Both Defensive Coordinator Tyler Swalley and Jaax believe that the practice is a unique and enjoyable way for the players to take advantage of time in ways that other teams are not.

“The team is excited and ready to show everyone how much they have been improving,” Jaax said.

The Railers first game is set for Aug. 31 against Buhler.