Coach Casey Tate and the Yellow Jackets closed out spring drills Friday with a scrimmage at home against Moore County. The scoreboard wasn’t in the Jackets’ favor at the end of the scrimmage as the varsity fell 4-1 in touchdowns. The teams also worked their junior varsity players before the night was over.
“After watching the film, I saw where we were six inches too close here and six inches too far away there. Installing the option based offense takes time.
“Defensively we were just committing too many fundamental errors and with a lot of these guys being new to competition that’s going to happen. There’s lots of room for improvement before fall for the kids, the coaches, and myself,” said Coach Tate.
Tate had 37 in uniform Friday night without any of the incoming freshmen from his championship Junior Jacket team. There were several players in uniform that have never played football before. The coach thinks many have raw talent and can be helpful in the fall but those players have to get a lot of tune up work to understand the game and the structure of the job they must perform on the field.
“Some of the kids who had a good spring practice were newcomers Alex Meeks, Josh Hoback, Jesse Campbell, Paul Freeman, Brady Meeks, and Matt Burrows. We also had veterans who provided leadership with Cody Crisp, Dakota Jones and Logan Borne,” said Tate.
The players will have weigh room workouts, the passing league, and various other opportunities to improve over the entire summer except for the TSSAA Dead Period which runs June 21 through July 4.
Like most coaches in their first year Tate has a lot of rebuilding to do. The Yellow Jackets lost several veteran leaders to graduation and some veterans that could return have decided to take their talents elsewhere or not to play. Combine that with depleted funds in the booster and school accounts and other issues with equipment and facilities and it makes the mountain even tougher to climb.
Several applied for the coaching job when it became vacant. In the end, it was Coach Tate who was chosen for the job. If the community expects the program to improve and succeed it will take the community to rally behind the program, the players and the coaches.
Successful football programs are not just built on players and coaches. It takes full community support for any program to be successful, and it especially does for football.
The choice has been made, and the coach is in place. It’s time for the Yellow Jacket faithful to step up and back the coach and the kids. Get involved and help build the future of Yellow Jacket football.