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Moms build team spirit by putting on football pads and plowing into their sons

A high school football program in Illinois puts on a maternal tackling clinic that's heavy on laughter

Mama, don't let your babies grow up to be ... tackling dummies.

Unless, of course, Mama herself gets to do the tackling, and unless those babies have grown up to also be stout high school football players.

Washington High School in Illinois hosted a "mom's night practice" that allowed players' mothers to put on pads and helmets and plow into their sons.

No penalty flags were thrown, and no booth reviews for targeting were necessary.

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But the moms logged some bone-crushing, helmet-rattling hits, and a combination of groans and laughter filled the background.

One matchup we'd like to see in future episodes is either of the moms wearing No. 87 getting a shot at the player wearing No. 75.

The Washington football team opens its regular season Friday against Highland. The Panthers will enter the game as one of the most uniquely battle-tested squads in the country.

(Photo courtesy of Thomas Bender, Herald-Tribune, USA Today Network)