YERMO - Don Price Field was vacant Monday afternoon.

Silver Valley abandoned the usually active and crowded field in favor of a nearby classroom for the day. They didn't run a single play, drill or lap. They didn't watch video of last week's game or of the team they are preparing to face - Tahquitz at 7 p.m. tonight - while in the classroom. The Trojans instead took time to read aloud and discuss the meaning of a page, front and back, of motivational quotes.

Each player and coach received their own quote and read it before explaining what they thought the quote meant in relation to them and to the team. The quotes' sources range from Vince Lombardi to Winston Churchill. Silver Valley coach Andy Campbell selected the quote, "Anyone can hold down the ship in calm waters," by first century B.C. writer Syrus Publilius for himself. He said he chose the quote to let the team know that they aren't the only one that make mistakes.

"I respect coach more for the quote and what he said on Monday," senior lineman Nathan Echaverria said. "He let us know it's not just one person or the team's fault. Under his coaching, we'll be fine."

Campbell said the team needed Mondy to rebuild their confidence after a string of difficult games. The Trojans have lost three straight games including a 35-0 loss to Mammoth in their Desert Mountain League opener. Silver Valley was only able to gain 31 yards on offense during the game.

"We had a hard game physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually, last week and we needed something to pick the guys up," Campbell said. "Hopefully that's what happened on Monday at practice. We gelled more as a team. We're starting to hit the point from earlier in the season where we were playing Trojan football."

A large portion of the quotes Campbell selected highlight the qualities of team pride, teamwork and leadership. Those are qualities that have been difficult for Silver Valley to develop over the years. The Trojans have a large military population whose families are often transferred in and out of the area making it difficult for players to become leaders or develop a cohesive bond.

There is only one player on the team who has a family history at Silver Valley. Kevin D. Mintun's father, Kevin J. Mintun, was also a Trojan. The junior lineman and center said his family history ties him to the team more.

"It gives me pride playing here and knowing my dad was here," Mintun said. "Every chance I get is for the Trojans. People have been like `Hey your Kevin Mintun's son' since I've gotten older because we look alike."

Campbell said he believes Monday's classroom session helped improve the team's communication and trust in one another. Mintun said he thinks the crowd will see a different team tonight. One thing is for sure; Don Price Field won't be vacant tonight.