When I first saw this story, I did not believe it was real.
And I can guarantee that this is not a satire. The story I am about to reveal is completely factual.
Recently, several members of the Tennessee Volunteer football team came down with staph infection, which can develop due to excessive sweating and is transferred through contact in close quarters, things that are very common in a football scenario.
However, Tennessee head coach Derek Dooley believed that his players were not taking proper preventative measures, and decided to show them how to properly protect against infection.
No, Coach Dooley did not make his players attend a medical seminar or take a course in first aid. Instead, he did something much simpler.
"We did a clinic yesterday on proper shower technique and soap and using a rag. We put some new rags in," Dooley told reporters. "Y’all think I’m kidding, but I’m serious…we talked a little bit about application of soap to the rag and making sure you hit all your body."
Just like teaching your small child how to properly take a bath, Coach Dooley instructed his players how to properly hit the showers.
It may seem like a childish exercise, but with all of the stories about coaches that seem to neglect their players circulating the media, this is a breath of fresh air.
Sure, it is a bit embarrassing for the Volunteer players. But, they just have to keep in mind that a team that washes together, wins together.
"You know, you can neglect it trying to cut corners, and it shows in how you practice and elsewhere. I’m hoping we show some improvement in that," Dooley claimed. Apparently, he believes that Tennessee will benefit from increased discipline, which is certainly not a bad thing for college kids.
Football is a sport that is all about discipline in all aspects, from the weight room, to the practice field, and on game day. It is extremely important to stay disciplined academically and athletically to be a good football player.
Now, some of you may say that Derek Dooley has gone too far. Shower discipline? That's ridiculous to many people.
But, it teaches players discipline, which should translate to the football field.
Unfortunately for the Volunteers, they may need to hit the showers a bit harder next week. After all, practice makes perfect. Tennessee was far from perfect in their 48-13 loss to No. 7 Oregon last week.
Maybe they were just a bit washed up.