Moms vs. sons in one-on-one tackling drills

Huntington High School moms take on their sons in one-on-one tackling drills
Moms vs. sons in one-on-one tackling drills
Published: Sep. 8, 2022 at 12:16 AM EDT
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HUNTINGTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - A different kind of player strapped on the pads at Wednesday night’s Huntington High School football practice. Instead of the varsity or junior varsity squads lining up for tackling drills, this time it was their mothers.

The football moms buckled up their chinstraps and took part in the one-on-one drills. As they lined up far away from the safety padding that was laid out on the turf, their target standing in front of it was their own child.

“You can tell they’ve definitely been on the football field,” said Huntington High running backs coach Ronnie Smith. ”You could tell all the moms. Half of them knew how to strap themselves up.”

Around 5:30 p.m., the coaching staff brought the mothers into the locker room for a rundown on how to safely wear and eventually use the shoulder pads and helmets.

Avonte Crawford is a sophomore on the team and said it was weird to be tackled by his own mom. Crawford still enjoyed the experience, saying he’s talked a lot of “smack” to her over the years.

“It means everything having a mother figure to come out here and do the things with me. It means a lot,” Crawford said. “Knowing that she’s always been there for me. She’s been there since day one, and to me, that’s my biggest supporter.”

Coach Smith said this was a chance for the team to give back to the mothers. He said they always make sure the players are fed before every game, take time out of their schedules to get them to practice, and of course, support them on Friday nights.

“It was very exciting. When I went to tackle my boy, I wasn’t sure if he would move out of my way, so I wasn’t sure how that was going to go” said Sharita Chappell, one of the mothers at Wednesday’s practice, “but it was pretty fun, it was very exciting and us moms had a good time doing it.”

The post-practice fun was scheduled this week because Huntington High does not have a game this Friday. Coaches, players, and the football moms say they hope this becomes a bye week tradition every season.