High School Football Practices begin and Colleges starting up right away:Who is having the toughest workouts in the early days???(“Nothing can compare to The County Fair”)

Posted by Andy Durham on August 1, 2014 at 11:38 am under College, High School | 12 Comments to Read

The high schools got going with practice at Midnight and several schools were taking advantage of the early starts and others will get going this morning and then even more will hit the field on Friday afternoon….

Everyone will have at least one practice in by the end of the day on Friday…Page and Ragsdale were on the field for the late-night workouts on Thursday and that took them into some early morning practice sessions on Friday morning, as they hit the field at the Midnight hour….

The rain made it messy for some teams, you know that has to be the case and with that rain coming in, all did not go as planned and the coaches had to make some adjustsments, but the teams are off and running and that is about all they will be able to do for the next few days with conditioning being the norm for the opening week, before they put on the pads…..

Wonder who is having the toughest/hardest workouts in the early days of practice during the 2014 high school football season???

From what I remember from back in the day, the Western Guilford Hornets used to have the hardest/toughest practices around…The old ‘County Fair’, with Coach Doug Henderson, used to be legendary….I had people mention that ‘County Fair’ to me 30-40 years after the fact….They would be asking me about Coach Henderson’s conditining week of practice and if I had ever heard of that ‘County Fair’….

Heard of it, I was in it…..You had these different sets of stations set up out there on the practice field and you were moving non-stop…Up-downs at one station, the monkey-roll or something like that at another station and on and on you went….And you had to run from one station to another and if you didn’t, you went back to the previous station and had to run over there to the new station again…There were about 7 of those stations and you did that ‘County Fair’ every day the first 7 days of the first week of practice and it was all about conditioning and the ‘County Fair’ was just one part of the practice…Run, run, run, run, run…….”Pick it up son, you’re wasting your time and mine”, you’ve got to move it boy”…..

You had all kinds of other drills and activities based on conditioning after you did your opening exercises and stretching….The ‘County Fair’ was one of the highlights and if you could get through that, then you knew you had done a good job on your Summer workouts and pre-practice training….

Not sure if today’s kids could get through that ‘County Fair’ or not, and it would be interesting to see…There is no doubt that Coach Doug Henderson had some of the toughest/hardest practices around and I also loved how we used to finish each practice on conditioning week with the sprints….Sprint after sprint, after sprint after sprint…..Take your pick, we had 100’s, 50’s, 40’s and 20’s and there was really something for everyone…I used to love those 100’s…I could beat most of the people in those, because I would save up my energy from the other sprints and pour it on in the 100’s….”It is all about how you finish”…..

Who has the toughest/hardest practices going today??? Wonder if today’s group could hang with Coach Henderson’s practices from the past….I kind of doubt it….Coach Henderson would really give it to you during that camp week, which lasted 3-4 days when the hitting began and you were allowed to pop….During the ‘Camp Week’ we used to practice four times a-day…Two heavy workouts(full gear) coming at 7:30am and at 5:30pm and then light workouts, coming at 11am and at 8:30pm….

As you can tell, I have been there and done that and am very lucky, I lived to tell about it….Those were some fun days and it is still fun to sit around and talk about it, but does anybody work out like that today and did any of you go at it like that back in the old days…I am pretty sure that nobody in this area worked any harder, or even as hard as we did back at Western Guilford…..We were small kids and we had to work hard so we would get mean….Did it pay off, well it sure helped my memory, cause I can remember every minute of it to this day….

What else are we hearing????

Anybody sore today?

I can remember sitting in a bathtub of hot water after that first Coach Henderson practice, just sitting in that tub, in the hot water, trying to get the soreness out, so I could be ready for the next practice and that old whirlpool at the high school stayed busy back in the day too/also….Man that ‘County Fair, can anything else still compare???

Colleges going soon too and N.C. State will get rolling with practice on Saturday and Hampton Billups, from Northwest Guilford HS, will be there….Was told he should report on August 16, but they stepped up his report date and after all of the physicals and checkups that State did with Hampton on Thursday, he will hit the field with the N.C. State Wolfpack on Saturday….Time for the colllege kids to get with it and things move a litte faster in college than they did in high school….The college ‘learning curve’ is much higher and a lot tougher….

There is my Friday workout on paper and believe or not, I still re-live those old football days every Saturday afternoon, when I do my running workout and highlight that day’s plan, with 30 40’s….Nothing like getting back into that old sprinting mode/mood….

Been there done that and still there, for some strange reason…..

But like they say, “Nothing can compare, to The County Fair”…..


  • Andy Durham said,

    Some of these practices can be hot and tough, but let’s be sure to keep it Kool on the comments….

  • Raymond said,

    Going back in the day I hear the hardest practices around were over at Page before Kirby got there. They say that old coach before Kirby nearly killed a few kids.

    These days the word on the street is that you hear Dudley has the toughest practices and it must pay off. Just look at the results.

    Northern don’t got nothing for Dudley this year. Dudley has the best quarterback, running backs and linemen in this area.

  • reallythough?? said,

    Raymond, with all due respect to Dudley and the great football program over there; there’s nothing wrong with having the beliefs that Dudley has the best Qb,Rb and lineman in the area but at the same time be realistic. Not saying that these guys wont become top tier players by season’s end because they have great coaches but at the end of the day you have seriously lost your mind if you think Dudley’s Qb is better then Jamiel Mack (High Point Central) Qb or better yet you’re crazy if you think Dudley’s offense is better than HPC’s offense this season. Heck, NW Guilford and East Forsyth wil have a better offense than Dudley. Dont get me wrong, Dudley will be one of the areas best teams but stats dont lie!!!

  • 77 Hornet said,

    Andy, Those 4 a days during football camp, came when we were spending the nights at the school in the classrooms! Breakfast came early and I remember the powdered eggs we had to eat. Those kinds of things made us tough. We had very few injuries back then.

  • Ol' Ball Coach Jr. said,

    HPC might wanna get some hogs up front seeing what Charlotte Catholic did to them last year…

  • Bunch of know it alls said,

    Nothing like a bunch of know it all wannabes who have a twisted opinion about anything and everything…

  • Andy Durham said,

    The old Hornet 77 knows how it was back in the day at WG…We had people moving in there from Page(Billy and Marty Thomas), Smith HS(Carl Pemberton), from Charlotte(Linnett Price/Turkey), Danny Ingram(Ragsdale), David Missron(Texas), there were people coming in from all over to the Hornets back in those days and that place was one of the top places to be, back in the day….

  • BisonPride said,

    Opinions are like… well you know the rest of the story. At the end of the day there is talent all over this county. And the play on the field will determined who’s who and what’s what. And the not the sideline pundits.

  • Ronnie G. said,

    I know for a fact that Northwest Guilford had some of the most intense practices of all the teams back when Coach Woodruff was here. They came a long way with him as their leader and were the conference champs. He knew how to get the most out of those young men.

  • EG Fan said,

    Eastern Guilford must be doing something right.

    Just look at all the improvement since the new coach came in last year and got the program headed into the right direction.

    EG is working hard and I’ll take them as the hardest working team in practice and off the field too.

  • Andy Durham said,

    Got a very good E-mail this morning and it was talking about the practices back in the day and they said back in the day their team here in Guilford County used to practice at 5:30am because many of their players had to work in the tobbaco fields and the early-morning practice would be done by 6:15, they would go hard for 45 minutes and then the tobbaco kids would go hit the fields and work the tobbaco priming/pulling during the day and come back for football practice with another session starting that night at around 7:30pm….

    So kids were practicing twice a-day and then pulling/priming tobbaco during the day in-between football practices….

    That sounds like a real load, especially if your practicing full at 5:30am and then at 7:30pm and working in tobbaco all day…Maybe some were back up at the tobbaco barn sorting or handing the tobbaco to the ones stringing it or unloading the tobbaco sleds or even strining too, or putting it(tobbaco) up in the barns….

    Sounds like a load if you are hitting the football sled and the tobbaco sled all in the same day….

    Has anyone else heard of times like these and what schools would have been effected here?????

    I am thinking Northwest Guilford, Northeast Guilford, Southeast Guilford and schools like that…

    Some of the most interesting input I have seen….

    A kid that might have been a pulling guard early in the morning and then he might have been pulling tobbaco all day long before his evening practice….

    Any input on this part and still looking for who has or had the toughest practices of all…..

  • SE Parent said,

    SEG is looking tough again. Very intense to say the least