Football Players Aim to Make it Through “Hell Week”

Freshman football players warm up before a game. (Photo by The Creek Yearbook photographer AJ Fletcher.)
Freshman football players warm up before a game. (Photo by The Creek Yearbook photographer AJ Fletcher.)

This week is Timber Creek football’s annual boot camp, or as it is widely known to students on campus, “Hell Week.”

Every day this week students in football not only have to get out of bed and go to school – which as we know is hard on its own some days – but the second they enter their first period (JV and varsity football) or fifth period (freshman), players enter what feels like endless conditioning and morale-breaking, tear-inducing physical work.

For years “Hell Week” has been a painful yet necessary tradition for the Falcon football program. During this week football players will be tested mentally and physically to prove their toughness and mental strength to their coaches. If they cant take the workout, they can quit and will be taken out of the period.

During the strenuous workout, the only way to stop the pain is to quit — an embarrassing feat on its own. In order to quit, players must make their way to the center of the football field to ring a bell three times, at which point you will be escorted off the field by a coach and taken out of the period all while being watched by fellow athletes and friends.

The process of “Hell Week” is not just a test of ability, it is also a test of whether athletes are committed to the program and to those who help students through the rough workouts and use their knowledge and time to help players become a better athlete. There are so many people who are committed to their sport, it is unfair to let those who are only in it for the title of “football player” continue to take the time of coaches and fellow players. Boot camp makes sure that uncommitted students are dismissed because if players are not fully committed to the team and the sport, it just wont be worth it for them.

During the week, athletes are separated into different groups and go through seemingly endless tiring and painful workouts. The group is only as strong as the weakest link because the exercise’s difficulty depends on if the entire group can produce or not. This ensures that a team mentality is needed to make it through the entire week.

For freshman, this is a brand new experience. This will be the first time they are submitted to the torment that is “Hell Week.” There are always one or two freshman athletes that cannot make it through. Those who make the walk of shame to the bell and ring it three times walk off the field, usually never to return.

Coaches who are usually supportive and motivational are almost completely the opposite during Boot Camp. They become harsh and completely ready to call players out at any time, they hold nothing back during this week. Their job is to weed out the students who aren’t committed to the program and send them away to do something they are committed to.

If students see a football player walking in the hallway and ask how football is going, they are sure to share a few horror stories about what they are going through.

Give your Falcon football players some support this week… they will need it.

What’s Next is a series of stories on how Timber Creek students are preparing for the next school year in sports, clubs, activities and their academics. Find more from this series by clicking this link.