As area high school football teams wrapped up the first official week of practice of the season, and will be strapping full pads on starting Monday.
For the Southeast Bulloch Yellow Jackets it’s been a pretty productive week. The Jackets were forced indoors due to weather issues on Monday and Tuesday, but were able to take to the field Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
“It was nice to get back on the field, and get some things done,” said Southeast Bulloch coach Barrett Davis. “We were finally able to get together as one big group with the players and coaches on the field.”
The Jackets have had pretty good participation in the time they were able to do conditioning over the summer. The start of official practice has seen that number increase, and Davis is hopeful for a few more to trickle in in the next couple weeks.
“We had pretty good numbers of over 60 or so for the summer,” Davis said. “We are around 80 out here right now. We usually pick up a few more when school starts.”
“We kind of took the first couple weeks back to get them back to lifting weights,” Davis said. “We got them into that routine, and then we slowly progressed getting those strength gains back over the past few weeks. I feel like we are slowly getting there.”
The start of school being pushed back is something most coaches initially saw as a bad thing, but most are now happy to have a little more time with the players before they begin school.
“We initially had a scrimmage game set for August 7th,” Davis said. “The scrimmage has been pushed back, but that is really good because it gives us more time to get our kids ready. I think it will be best for us in the long run because we had so much time off between the middle of March and when we finally were able to start back.”
The Jackets actually have two scrimmage games coming up later this month. The first game will be August 21st at home against Claxton, and the following week the Jackets will be at Thomson.
“We will get about three weeks of full pads before playing that first game,” Davis said. “That will give us a good idea of what kids can do, and who likes contact and who doesn’t. I think playing at home against Claxton will be a good first step. They are a solid team, and did well in their region last year. Thomson is usually one of the better programs in the state, and that will really get us ready for our season opener.”
Davis feels in some way they are ahead of things as far as what they are having to teach the players.
“I think we have the majority of our offensive and defensive scheme stuff installed,” Davis said. “We are still tweaking a few things, and there will be some surprises implemented as well.”
The Jackets are scheduled to start the regular season Sept. 4 at Brantley County.