- The Washington Times - Wednesday, July 24, 2002

None like it hot

CARLISLE, Pa. The heat is off at Redskins training camp at least for now.

The intense heat that has plagued the mid-Atlantic through most of this summer was on hand for yesterday's morning session before abating as heavy thunderstorms moved in during the mid-afternoon.

Early on the conditions were reminiscent of last summer, when temperatures regularly soared into the 90s and even reached 100 on a few occasions. The on-field temperature yesterday was at 117 degrees at one point late in the 9:30 to 11:30a.m. practice, and many players dragged themselves off the field.

Anyone more than 200 pounds probably dropped at least six from water loss with 217-pound receiver Rod Gardner looking near collapse. And he's from Jacksonville, Fla.

Temperatures fell more than 20 degrees as the afternoon practice was canceled, and a pleasant weather pattern seems to have set in. It shouldn't get out of the low 80s over the next few days and isn't expected to reach the 90s before the team leaves Carlisle for Osaka, Japan, next week where 95 degrees and high humidity await.

Rub a dub dub

There were three men in a tub. Sometimes four. Players cooled off in two giant tubs of icy water. It wasn't very soothing, though. Linebacker LaVar Arrington nearly leapt out after four bags of ice were added.

"I dare anyone to even put their hand in it," Arrington said.

The tubs outside the locker room were a new training method to freshen tired muscles. However, many players wondered whether to try it again.

Extra points

• The team exited practice to a loud ovation by fans, who can now sit on either side of the field for the first time. However, the new configuration largely keeps autograph seekers far away from the locker room. Instead, fans gathered outside the student union to grab players heading to lunch.

• Running back Jimmy Watkins didn't make a good first impression. The rookie from Appalachian State fumbled two carries and two punt returns and fell twice.

• The most alarming sight around town were teen-age boys dressed like girls. And not very attractive ones at that. The youths are attending educational seminars at Dickinson College.

At a Glance

Today's practices: 9:30 a.m., 4 p.m.

Weather: 79 degrees, sunny

Health watch: DE Bruce Smith (knees), DT Santana Dotson (calf), Brett Conway (ill) missed practice. CB Kato Serwanga (knee) left early.

Rick Snider and Jody Foldesy

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