Football team begins season prep


Credit: Benjy Renton

The football team has already begun training for the 2017 season, practicing a new offense.

By Pat Walker, Sports Editor

A MIFL League Championship and a 7-0 undefeated season. What more could a football team ask for? Under the leadership of new head coach Simon Berk and captains Winston Britton, Will Cotter, Jordan Patrick, and Michael Hoffman, the Hornets finished last year’s season with exactly what they hoped to achieve. A dominant force against in and out-of-league schools, the team knows what type of off-season work it is going to take to beat out the competition in the 2017 season. With new captains in place for next year, the team is under high expectations from a great group of upperclassmen.

Now with spring on its way, the team has already started training for what next year has to hold. In the midst of winter and fall sports, certain football players have to make the necessary sacrifices and balance their time accordingly in order to make time for football. Although uncommon for a small private school to practice so far from the start of the season, football players have brought it upon themselves to do so after such a successful finish. “We have definitely ramped up our off-season preparation from last year, as we have been holding weekly team lifts on Fridays, as well as team skill practices on Monday mornings,” said current junior captain Chad Lasseter. These lifts and practices are more recommended than mandatory, but a good portion of the team still manages to make time for football. By starting practice in the middle of the winter, the team is eager to enter into a new season and continue to challenge its opponents. Moreover, despite losing a strong group of seniors, most to collegiate play, the group is highly confident with the wide range of talent they still have ready to hit on the roster.

“Coach Berk is all for it. He loves to win and compete, and his enthusiasm has really rubbed off on everyone else. He is definitely a big part of these workouts,” Chad continued. With Berk’s new expectation of early off-season preparation, Hackley Football’s legacy holds an even brighter future. However, it is less Berk’s demands and more the players’ desires to get more confident and comfortable as one team. “I think that our main goal is to repeat as league champs, and hopefully keep Coach Berk’s record spotless. Beyond that, I think that we seniors are looking to cement the program’s new direction, and make sure that we leave it in a place to be successful in the future,” said Chad. Along with off-season preparation led by captains, the team will also have a mini-camp in June and several 7-on-7 tournaments to showcase their talents against other public and private schools this summer. With so much opportunity for improvement in the off-season, football is ready to accomplish big goals for the second consecutive year. Rising seniors have been given the chance to push for another special season and keep the program alive for the near future. The school cannot wait to see what Hackley Football has in store for its performance next fall.