Football for moms: School celebrates Mother’s Day in August

Alex Rubin

Just two minutes into his lesson plan, School of the Osage head football coach Dan Henderson looked into a sea of blank faces and said “I’m losing people already, I know.”

If he were speaking to a group of football players less than two weeks from their first game, this would be a cause for concern. On Saturday, however, there was no cause for concern as the pupils were not the School of the Osage Indians. The students were the football team’s mothers.

About 35 of the players’ moms showed up for the second annual Mother's Day Clinic to learn a little bit about what their sons do every day after school.

Henderson started off by warning the moms the team has a “different language that they speak.”

And this seemed to be the case for most of the day, except for the one moment when a mother raised her hand, asking if a specific defensive formation on the whiteboard was “man or zone defense?”

After a few seconds of stunned laughter, the coach explained how the team plays mainly man defense.

Afterward, Henderson was still in shock from the question, saying “We’re in our second year of Mother's Say clinics, and I never thought I’d hear a question about man or zone.”

Louise Williams of Lake Ozark said that she “learned a lot, it was informative. I might look for some things (this season).”

While the mothers learned from the whiteboard session, the highlight of the afternoon was when they put on jerseys and went through a calisthenics session before they attempted to run an option play.

School of the Osage mother Susie Rodden, whose son Porter is an offensive lineman, said after the class “you can understand (the game) better, knowing what the boys do.”

Indian offensive lineman T.J. Smith said that “it was hilarious” watching is mom on the field.

While there were some stumbles along the way, the afternoon finished with a touchdown and celebration in the end zone.

Henderson said that while it’s fun for everyone, the objective is to make the mothers feel a part of the team.

“You want your moms happy, try to make them a big part (of the team),” Henderson said. “We try to give them an idea of what their sons go through on a daily basis.”

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