Preseason is Here

The two-week preseason for men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s soccer, and women’s volleyball starts today for the Maranatha teams! This is a favorite time for many students who commit to being fall athletes. I talked to several of the head coaches of the teams and the athletic director of MBU to get their input on preseason:

When asked what her favorite aspect of preseason was, Coach DeLozier (Women’s Volleyball) said,

“Having all the ladies together without the pressure of classes and assignments allows extra time to get to know each other and build team unity. It allows us a special time of bonding, sharing God’s Word, and serving others, all while getting our team prepared to start the season.”  

This sentiment was shared by all those who responded. Mainly, the coaching staff looked forward to the focused time that they get to share with their team before all of the distractions of school life come.

Goals play a huge role in preseason. As any good coach will point out, good personal and team goals are very important for the success of any team. Every athletic staff member I asked mentioned something about creating or clarifying goals for the oncoming season as an important use of preseason. This can be invaluable to the teams and especially new players.

When asked how preseason helps new athletes especially, Coach Jeff Pill (Men’s Soccer) said,

“Most of them do not have an accurate understanding of just how much of a jump it is from what they have been playing in HS, especially if they come from a small Christian school. So, their learning curve during those first days is quite steep. It takes them a while to get used to the pace and physical demands of the college game.”

Coach Pill even recalls a freshman player coming up to him during preseason and saying, “Coach, I am pretty sure this is a different sport than I played in high school, even though they called it the same name!”

Rob Thompson (MBU Athletic Director) points out that preseason helps out new players/students in that they get acclimated to campus before the business of school hits. They get to come into the school year with a set of relationships already built. Having some school “veterans” as friends going into the school year can be a huge help for a freshman’s ability to take on their first year.

This time of year can also be a time of incredible nerves for many new players. The new coaches and teammates, the higher level of play, and even the desire to start the school year off well can add pressure to a new player. Don’t fear though, for every player who is currently playing has had their first-year experience!

Coach David Anderson (Women’s Soccer) suggests just getting out and playing against competition that is better than you for those high-school students hoping to come play at a collegiate level.

“When you get to college, most likely you will be playing against competition that is bigger, faster, and stronger – and if not, they will at least have more experience than you have. So, the best preparation is to start playing against bigger, faster, stronger opponents right now!”

Coach Pill and Thompson had similar sentiments for high school players. Coach Thompson advises to prepare yourself physically. Likewise, Coach Pill’s advice is to come in fit. Although there is a preseason, this time is not spent getting players in shape. When you come into your first year fit, you are setting yourself up for success.

Another piece of advice that the coaches pointed out is to be patient. While in high school, you should prepare yourself as best as you can. Push yourself physically, technically, and mentally. Once you are here, though, be patient in the process of starting to play with a new team. As we have pointed out, the collegiate level is a step up. There will be a natural adjustment time to get used to the pace. Prepare yourself for that time and stick to the process and the rewards are substantial.

College sports play a huge role in many student’s time at college and many athletes refer to preseason as the best time of the year. If this gets you excited to play, start preparing now! Start playing better competition and watching professionals.

For more athletic information, go to MBU’s athletics website. Keep up to date with rosters, schedules, live scores, and much more.