A-10: A Stretch Of The Imagination

By - October 24, 2006

With the playing status of key holdovers Mark Tyndale and Wayne Marshall in question -- each having been declared academically ineligible for the first semester -- Temple was tabbed for ninth in the league's preseason poll, an unusual position for the Atlantic 10's longtime standard-bearer.

In preparation for his first season with the Owls, incoming coach Fran Dunphy -- the first person to man the sidelines at two different Big 5 schools -- hasn't maintained Hall of Fame coach John Chaney's insane early-morning practice schedule. But that doesn't mean Dunph has completely eschewed the unorthodox. The 57-year-old coach had his players participate in yoga classes during the early weeks of practice, even joining in the sessions with his charges.

“They would lift three days a week and they did yoga two days a week. I tried to do it with them -- not at quite the same flexibility level as some of our guys,” Dunphy said. “It was fun. I don’t think they loved it by any stretch, but I think they understood the quality of work that can come out of it -- whether it’s better breathing, better flexibility, more balance, more discipline, more focus.”

But why yoga?

“I’ve done some different things each and every preseason [at Penn]. We did kickboxing one year, we did karate, we did Pilates. We’ve done a lot of different things just to change some things up," Dunphy said. "Instead of just going out and running around the track or running steps or those kind of things, do different things that might get them more interested in taking care of their bodies.

"If you do it right, it’s hard. It’s like anything else -- you can quit on a particular stretch if you want, but who’s that helping? If you don’t push yourself through that, where is the discipline that you need in order to be more healthy, more fit and more ready to go?”

When asked for his thoughts on Chaney's absence from the conference media day, Saint Joseph’s coach Phil Martelli looked around the room incredulously.

“He’s not here? He didn’t retire, did he?” deadpanned Martelli. “I thought they would carry him out in a box.”

  • Listen to Phil Martelli discuss John Chaney's impact

Posted by at 02:19 PM on October 24, 2006

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