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Finally, return to the gridiron

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By Matt Dziak / Interim Sports Editor

Man power (Allison Perez / Interim Photo Editor )

By Matt Dziak / Interim Sports Editor

Lockouts and disputes over collective bargaining agreements are a far cry from the Riverside gridiron.

Unlike the NFL, the Riverside City College football players spent their offseason together as a unit training for the upcoming season.

Two-a-day practices, offseason workouts, team and position meetings, all are leading up to the return of the boys of fall.

Last year the RCC football team saw a dramatic turnaround under first year coach Tom Craft. With a coaching staff with NFL experience, training camp has been a success and the players are making great strides.

The Tigers are on a quest to improve from their 10-1 season each time they take to the practice field in the summer heat.

As their final days of preparation dwindle before the start of the season, the coaching staff is working hard every morning during position drills grinding out reps and striving to get the most out their players.

“There’s a lot of competition at every position,” said Craft. “If someone gets hurt we feel as though we won’t fall off, and we have a lot more depth and a lot more experience this year.”

Quarterback Dalton Livingston looks to improve upon an excellent first year with the talented weapons he will be targeting this season. During practice, Dalton has been able to develop a rapport with his running backs and wide receivers as they work out the timing of their throw and routes.

One significant difference in this year’s team is the depth at each position and the plethora of talent is unmatched. “Overall this team has a chance to be one of the best teams I’ve coached,” Craft said. “We still have to play out the season but right now it’s one of the most talented.”

With a coach who has earned state and national championships at the community college level, the expectations are high and the intensity is shown at practice.

The Tigers open the season on the road against cross freeway rival San Bernardino Valley on September 10 at 6 p.m.

The key matchup this year will be the home opener on September 24, at 6 p.m. against Coach Craft’s former Mt. San Antonio College. The winner of that game will have the potential of an undefeated season and the possibility of a state title shot.


Wrap him up (Allison Perez / Interim Photo Editor )

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