McMurry University’s football program has been in desperate need of an overhaul, and the university believed that Hal Mumme would be the man to create the change needed to a program that has just three winning seasons since 1994. Wednesday, Mumme welcomed 97 players to campus in preparation for the 2009 season.
NCAA rules state that players can report before the first day of practice but cannot participate in any team activities including organized football practice and film viewing among other things.
So, McMurry’s football hopefuls went through the logistics of enrolling in school and took care of necessary issues such as insurance, residence hall check in, and financial aid help among other things.
Move in began at 11 a.m. and Wednesday’s activities will be capped by meeting with the players and their first encounter with Mumme.
Mumme, the highly touted offensive coach and originator of the Air Raid offense that many of the big-time schools in the NCAA Division I are running including Texas Tech, came to McMurry as head coach in April.
Mumme said that his initial meeting with the players would have a simple message, and the same one that he’s given for 20 years.
“Give an honest effort, be loyal to your teammates, and communicate,” Mumme said. “We have one rule: Don’t hurt the team. There are three things that will get you automatically dismissed from our program: drugs, beating up someone weaker than you, and stealing. And as far as football goes, the most important play is the next play. Play the next play.”
McMurry will begin working on those plays Thursday night at 8 p.m. in the team’s first practice under Mumme’s tutelage.