While softball and volleyball open the regular season next week, the White County football team will put on pads for the first time next Monday with the start of full contact workouts.
Last week, the Georgia High School Association pushed back the start of the 2020 season by two weeks until Sept. 4 due to COVID-19, but the practice schedule pretty much stayed on course.
The Warriors will have a month to prepare for the start of the season.
The acclimation week gave the WCHS coaching staff it's first chance to work with all of the players in the program as the rising freshmen were allowed to practice with upperclassmen after the GHSA removed the group size restrictions.
“It's been an exciting week,” WCHS head coach Tim Cokely said. “The kids are excited. We've got really good numbers out here. We've had more than 70, probably closer than 80 kids, here every day, so there's been a lot of positive things happening. For me, when the GHSA moved the season back two weeks, I took that as a sign that we're going to play, so we're excited. We're looking forward to putting on the pads next week and getting back to football.”
With the two-week delay, teams have had to rework their practice, and in some cases, their season schedules.
During a parent meeting earlier in the week, Cokely announced the team will be playing a pair of scrimmages in late August. The Warriors will travel to Blue Ridge to take on Fannin County on Friday, Aug. 21, and then host Union County on Thursday, Aug. 27.
Cokely said because the team missed so much work this summer, he thought it would be beneficial to get the team on the field a couple of times before the start of the season.
“We didn't get to do a lot in June,” Cokely said. “With all of the restrictions and rules, we don't get to practice as much as we used to, and we aren't allowed to hit as much in practice, so we need the work. The kids are excited about getting to play, and Fannin County is a good place to travel, and they have a good team. We're really excited to get back on the field.”