Rise and Shine for Intense First Practice of 2016-17

Sunrise in Gainesville was officially recorded at 7:24 a.m. on Monday, October 3. The Gators had just six minutes remaining in their first official team practice by the time the rest of the city saw daylight.

The women’s basketball team began its 2016-17 season outside. Across the street from their private practice complex. On the track. Challenged by their coaches, by each other, by unusual drills and, naturally for a college student, by the very early morning.

All of this to build comradery and most of all – TOUGHNESS!

If there is a trademark of the Gators under Head Coach Amanda Butler, it has been toughness.

That toughness as a unit has been coming together throughout preseason conditioning and for the 2016-17 squad, it officially began very early Monday morning.

Quoting Head Coach Amanda Butler:

On the plan for Monday’s first official team practice:

“Our first three days are a defensive mini-camp and it’s just what you would expect. We work solely on defense. It starts at six o’clock in the morning and it begins outside on the track. It’s not what everyone else is doing and we take great pride in that. It’s a total focus on our defensive mentality, how aggressive we are on defense. We take pride in being a great offensive team through the way we play defense. Cultivating toughness, togetherness and doing that through defensive challenges.”

Overall assessment of practice:

“It was pretty exciting and there was great energy. I thought we went hard. We had tremendous leadership. We are trying, as the leaders of this program – the staff, different ways to challenge them and they are really stepping up and responding to everything we’ve thrown at them.”

On the newcomers:

“They did well. They are very eager to learn, very coachable. At the same time, one of our greatest strengths is our upperclassmen so they have tremendous role models to watch and learn how things are supposed to be done.”


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