I got the chance to go by Grimsley on Monday afternoon and watch the team as they went through their first workout for the 2006 season. Football practice officially began at 6pm and the team got it started with some stretching and some light running. You can only go at it in helmets and T shirts the first week of practice and with the heat it would have been rough to be hitting the field in full gear on Monday. The temps were probably in the mid-90’s and there were numerous water breaks for the kids.
Several Whirlies showed up for practice on Monday and they had not gotten their pre-season physicals and Coach Todd Shuping was ticked off to no end. The coach had a few choice things to say to the players that we can’t print here, but the long and short of it is the kids could not practice without the physicals and they were not doing anybody any good because it was the first day of practice and these kids couldn’t do a darn thing. Get out my face and and out of this place and don’t come back until you can practice and when you do come back you’re gonna pay the price. A few kids did stick around and hold practice dummies or stand in a spot to simulate a player’s position on the field.
The kids went through some drills and then they started running plays and breaking up into some seven on seven groups. Again it was extremely hot but the kids seemed to having a good time popping each other as much as they could without wearing pads. Grimsley has a ton of talent coming back from last year’s team that made it to the state championship game. The two major losses were Robert Lane(QB,RB,DB) and Brandon Peguese(DE).
The Whirlies return QB Josh Stewart(they had him lining up mainly at DB on Monday), DE Jamar Reese(this kid is unbelievable, sleek-smooth-quick and only a Junior), DB Jack Schultz(outstanding as a Soph. and will be even better in 2006), TE/LB Cody Walker(could be a future star), RB’s Jon Morris, David Moore, and Lionel Shoffner are all due back, big linemen Matt Douglas(6’0 320), Andrew Oakes(5’9 300), Jordan Fowler(6’2 260), Bryan Kenney(6’7 295), Mike Morgan(5’9 250), and Micha Doub(6’3 230) are slated to return as is the four-year starter at kicker Gavin Segall-Abrams.
Grimsley should be loaded and the way they were practicing on Monday they look hungry and better not be taken lightly. The drills the Whirlies were running were way beyond what you normally see on the first day of workouts and it is obvious they are at an advanced level on July 31 because they have done their homework over the summer months. These kids have been getting ready for this week all summer long. It is hot but it is time to get to work, the first games will be here on August 18. Kellie Dixon of the News and Record and N&R photographer Lynn Hey were also at Monday’s practice and will be covering the HS scene again this season.