With the imminent start of school this week, young athletes also began that other fall phenomenon, football practice, on Monday, July 28. Sign-ups, registration, physicals and weigh-ins began at the Riverbank Sports Complex.
While Riverbank Raiders players began their workouts with 90-plus degree temperatures, cheerleaders were trying on their new equipment to make sure they fit properly. Team staffers were assembling new helmets, but said the new uniforms were still on their way. Not a problem, though, since league rules require a specific amount of physical training before players are allowed to suit up and participate in contact drills.
The different level of competition for players is delineated by limits in age and weight, to decrease the possibility of injuries, by pitting players of similar size and skills against one another. In addition to rigorous calisthenics, Riverbank Raiders football players get to run, and run and run again. Even with 90-plus degree temperatures, the physical conditioning is required by the league before players can begin the full contact practices.
The full fall schedule has not been released yet, but home games are scheduled to be played at Riverbank High School, where there are adequate stands for both home and visiting teams.