Have you ever wondered what it’s like to play for Coach Nick Saban? Or maybe you want to know what it takes to play for the reigning college football champs? My name is Hale Hentges and I’m going to walk you through a typical day in my life as a college football player for the University of Alabama.
7:00 AM-8:00 AM – My day will start around 6:30 by rolling out of bed and slipping my shoes on to go to the weight room. We like to make sure to stay in shape during the long football season. We usually will lift for around 30 minutes. Nothing too long, just enough to make sure we keep our arms and legs in peak condition. We do a lot of shoulder work and hip loosening.
8:00 AM-9:00 AM – After I shower and change from the workout, I will eat a hearty breakfast. I usually like to eat something like Greek yogurt, eggs, and toast. By eating this, I can fuel my body with protein and carbs to rebuild my muscles after a tough workout. The carbs will help me fuel my body for the long day ahead. Whenever I don’t eat breakfast, I don’t feel as productive throughout the day.
9:00 AM-12:00 PM – Classes in college pretty much vary every other day. Most of the time, I’ll have two to three classes each day. They are usually an hour to an hour and a half long. I am a Marketing major and spend most of my time in the same business building. Classes in college are significantly harder than classes in high school, so it is essential to work hard in each class and start off your college career with a great GPA!
12:00 PM-2:00 PM – In this two-hour window, I will walk to our football facility, eat lunch, and get dressed for practice. As you can imagine, it gets hot in Alabama, so sometimes that walk is terrible. However, as soon as I step into the cool A/C of our football complex and look at the delicious lunch, I forget all about the heat. I usually try and eat something like a turkey sandwich, fruit, and nuts. This will give me much needed quick, light energy for practice. Most importantly, it won’t sit too heavy on my stomach. On full-padded practice days, I have to: get my ankles taped, slide socks over the sticky tape, put on thigh pads, knee pads, hip pads, and butt pads, football pants, a belt, and a compression shirt. This all needs to be on before meetings at 2:00 PM.
2:00 PM-3:30 PM – We will have meetings as a team, offense, and tight ends. In these three different meetings, we talk about practice from the day before, what we are going to do today, and the defense we are going to face on Saturday. A lot of people don’t like meetings, but I enjoy them. I like watching myself and figuring out what I need to do to get better. I also enjoy the feedback I get from the coaches about my play. I appreciate the mental side of the game.
3:30 PM-6:00 PM – We are usually on the field for around two and a half hours. We will start practice with an offensive and defensive walkthrough, and the stretching, this is followed by a turnover circuit and offensive and defensive start. From there, the tight ends will break off and go work on position-specific drills. After this, we will have a walkthrough as a whole offense and figure out what plays are going to work against our opponents this week. From there we will compete against the defense in the inside run, which is a run-based team drill that is very physical. After that, we will do 7on7 and a special teams period. The second half of the practice will be full of team-based situations and drills. We usually end the practice by conditioning.
6:00 PM-11:00 PM – The last part of the day is filled with dinner, homework, and studying for the tests I have the next day. Hopefully, I don’t have any work to do, but usually, that is not the case. I try to get to bed at a decent time because I have to wake up and do it all over again!
* Originally published on September 10, 2018, by Hale Hentges