June 30, 2009

If you get a chance to go to Training Camp... Go!

The Seahawks have announced that Training Camp will be open to the public, but you need to register for a spot on Seahawks.com starting July 16 at 10 am pacific time. I don't know what things will be like at the VMAC in Renton... I don't know how close you'll be able to get to the players and coaches, but if the atmosphere is anything like it was in Cheney, you shouldn't think twice about trying to make it to one of these practices.

The VMAC is a football palace, but I'm already missing those training camps at EWU. Sure it was too hot and too remote, but it was amazing how close you could get to the players. The first time I went was in 1998, and when I saw Joey Galloway running towards me onto the field I brandished my Galloway jersey and word-barfed something like "Wooo! Joey! Yeah! Woooooo!" He actually saw me, noticed I was wearing his jersey and gave me the the "reverse nod + sup" move. THAT made my day.

I went again in 2006 with my little brother (all the pics are right here on flickr)... look how close we were able to get to the players:

Here's what I wrote back then (some of it looks pretty foolish in retrospect, of course)...

This is one of the only instances where there can be actual (albeit limited) interaction between players and fans, and thankfully no players acted like prima donna dickholes on Saturday.

As players passed by, I shouted to Walter Jones that he was the best player in the NFL and was headed to the Hall of Fame… I told Matt that this was HIS year to be NFL MVP, and I told Lofa Tatupu that he got robbed of the defensive rookie of the year award last year. I yelped at Jerramy Stevens that this was his year to be all-pro, and he gave me a big grin and said “that’s right.”

While I was jabbering away, my little brother James was getting autographs from players like Mack Strong, Lofa, Marcus Trufant and Julian Peterson. James had a blast… It was well worth the 4-hour round trip from the Tri-Cities and back.

Some cool moments:

-We got to hear Holmgren get pissed and yell at the team a couple of times.

-We saw up close that Ryan Plackemeier could be a dominant punter once he gains some consistency

-Cool plays: Kelly Herndon jumped a route to make a spectaclar interception, and D.J. Hackett made a Tecmo Bowl-esque leaping TD catch over two defenders. The best moment was during the 1st team scrimmage.. Without anyone to throw to, Hass ran for a TD. Of course, no one was going to touch him and risk injuring our most indispensable asset. The crowd let out a cheer, and Hass gave a wave and a couple of quick bows. It was a cute little moment from our bald spaz of a QB…

All in all it was a great time. If you are a Seahawks fan and have the means, you should get out to Cheney to enjoy the spectacle this month.

What was true in '06 is still true now. I just hope the move to the VMAC doesn't suck all the organic fun out of the experience.

Any of you have memories of going to past training camps to share?

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