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Training Camp Under Vince Lombardi

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I was sent an advance copy of That First Season by John Eisenberg. I'm halfway through and it's a pretty good book. I'm a history nut in general, but I've got a lot to learn about the Green Bay Packers' history. The book is well timed since 2009 is the 50th anniversary of Vince Lombardi's first season in Green Bay. And last week was the 50th anniversary of the start of Packers' first training camp under Lombardi.

Scooter McLean was the head coach in 1958 and the players had it easy during his training camp compared to what Lombardi had in store for them. From That First Season:

"Three laps around the goalposts!"

Shouting those words on July 24, 1959, at 10 A.M., Lombardi opened training camp. Thirty-nine players dressed in gray shorts and white T-Shirts started running across the Packers' practice field next to City Stadium. The morning was overcast and hot. Lombardi wore long khaki pants, a white T-shirt, and a dark green baseball cap. His mood was buoyant, his booming voice richocheting across the field. After a decade under Earl Blaik and Jim Lee Howell, he finally had his own team. (p. 83).

Then after the first morning practice was over:

The players were hollow-eyed as they trudged up the hill to the locker room and boarded two yellow buses for the ride back to St. Norbert. Scooter's workouts hadn't been nearly as crisp, organized, or demanding. Back at St. Norbert they spilled out of the buses, went to their rooms, and flopped on their beds, exhausted. (p. 87).