Monday, February 05, 2007

First Day of Camp

While the thermometer outside was frozen solid at a balmy 17 degrees today (at least it's a dry cold), the Revs trained in a more hospitable atmosphere at the Fore Kicks indoor facility this morning. Far removed from the hazy conditions they last played under back on that fateful Sunday in November, the team took to indoor field for the first time in 2007 by running laps together. Among the familiar faces of Jay Heaps, Steve Ralston and Pat Noonan were the fresh new faces of Wells Thompson, Amaeche Igwe and Chris Loftus, all sporting their newly-issued numbers and training gear.

As this was the first day of training, the squad primarily took part in the prototypical beginning of season fitness drills, including jogs, juggling, sprints, and agility tests. Under the watchful eye of two trainers, the team took part in calisthenics and other conditioning routines. With the session devoted solely to conditioning tests, the usual small-sided scrimmage was bypassed. Afterward, many of the rookies met with the local media for the first time.

Training Notes:

*It wasn't exactly Palm Beach paradise indoors - many of the players sported their training jackets and warm-up pants with the temps inside estimated in the 50s. Winter jackets were sported by media and casual bystanders.

*Contrary to previous reports, Pat Noonan not only participated in training, but did not look one bit the injured-self many proclaimed him to be. He was not noticeably limited in any of the exercises or drills that the team took part in.

*Notable absences: Matt Reis, Taylor Twellman, Michael Parkhurst, and Joey Franchino. While the absences of Reis, Twellman, and Parkhurst were surely due to their involvement with the US MNT, there was much mystery surrounding Franchino's no-show.

*Biggest surprise of Day 1 training: Tony Lochhead's newly-shorn head of hair. Many of the media contingent were stumped on the identity of the close-cropped number 19 until it was figured out by yours truly. For the record, the gold curly locks have been unceremoniously trimmed to a short, dark shrub.

*Unquestionably, the player with the biggest media draw was first round pick Wells Thompson. The Wake Forest product fielded questions from at least five different media outlets after training.

*The breakdown of the rookies' jersey numbers:

Amaeche Igwe - 2
Adam Cristman - 7
Gary Flood - 17
Wells Thompson - 27
Chris Loftus - 28
Ryan Solle - 30
Phil Marfuggi - 34

*Side note - seeing a number 2 (Igwe) on another player not named Clint Dempsey is going to take some getting used to.

*According Rveolution lore, the number 10 is bad luck, and the Revs have refused to issue it in recent years.

*The only rookies absent from training: Kyle Helton and Bryan Byrne.

*None of the players from Friday's tryout were present.

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