Behind the scenes with Lincoln Parish’s college athletes

By Sara Howell-Floyd

When people think of college athletics the first thing that comes to mind for most is the game itself or the game-winning plays that cause the crowd to erupt with excitement. But student-athletes put a lot of  blood, sweat and tears in to get to those amazing moments.  

Morgan Adams, a softball player at Grambling State, and Praise Okorie, a football player at Louisiana Tech, shared their stories of what life as a student athlete looks like in Lincoln Parish.

“A normal game day is pretty simple,” Adams said. “I am the nervous type, so I pretty much stay to myself during the process of getting ready and warming up. I listen to the same playlist.”

She said that her playlist is a mix of R&B, gospel and rap to get her ready for the game. Adams also shared she has some superstitions.

“I have to eat a red sucker before the game and my parents and siblings have to send me a message before the game,” she said.

Okorie also shared what his typical game day looks like for a 7 p.m. kickoff.

“A game day is staying at a hotel with the team and having a wake-up call at around 9 a.m. for breakfast,” he said. “Then we have some walk-thru’s to go over plays and other specifics.” 

After the team does that, they get a break and have a pregame meal. 

“Buses leave at 3:30 p.m. so we are at the stadium by 4 p.m.,” he said. “We then have a 15-minute team meeting. Then we head to the locker room to get ready for the game.” 

While those are what a typical game day looks like for Adams and Okorie, those game day moments do not just happen. 

Both Okorie and Adams described long days with workouts, practices, classes, homework, as well as physical therapy treatments. 

“I (also) work at a medical supply store from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. every day,” Adams said.

While carrying these busy schedules, Adams and Okorie still have hobbies and are active in clubs on their respective campuses. Both are members of their schools Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC). Adams serves as the vice president and Okorie is co-chair of the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee. 

“I am a member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc., and I also like to participate in research studies with a couple of my professors,” Adams said.

Okorie said he had musical hobbies he liked to focus on.

“A hobby of mine is playing the ukulele and trying to learn music and also going outdoors and traveling when I can,” he said.

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