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Going to the Dogs

The quest for another region championship began Monday. The Thomson Bulldogs were back on the practice field running through the football fundamentals in preparation for the 2005 season.

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Jarell McNair hands the ball to Tim McCord during Monday's opening practice for the Thomson High School Bulldogs.

Practice this week went Monday through Thursday and was without pads, per a new Georgia High School Association rule and started at 6 p.m. Next week, two-a-day practices with full pads begin with one at 8 a.m. and one at 6 p.m. with Friday off.

Thomson Head Coach Luther Welsh said the players are slowly getting back into the swing of being on the gridiron once again after a few months away.

"When you've got to get down in a position that you haven't been in for four or five months, it's going to take a couple of days to get it down and feel comfortable," he said, adding that the most important thing for the first week is to get the players back in shape.

Coach Welsh said most of the older players had little trouble getting back into the routine, but as expected, the younger kids took a little more time getting used to the physical demands of football practice.

On offense, skill players ran through handoffs while linemen worked with blocking dummies. Defensive Coordinator John Barnett had his players using tackling dummies and bumping off the line. Coach Welsh said repetition is the key.

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Marquis Johnson hits a blocking pad during Monday's practice.

After all the work on fundamentals, the team began running plays on Wednesday. Coaches expect to start some inter-squad scrimmaging next week.

But with the high temperatures and humidity, coaches and players are taking precautions to make sure everyone stays hydrated, especially after Arcephus Jones suffered a heat stroke last year. The lineman missed the entire season due to extensive kidney and liver damage.

"We will, and have been giving them plenty of water during practice," Coach Barnett said, adding the Arcephus' injury had more to do with not being able to eat properly due to a virus.

"The kids need to hydrate themselves before and after practice and eat properly," Coach Barnett said. "We give them plenty of water during practice, but that does no good if they don't hydrate and eat before and after each practice."


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Quarterback Anthony "Pooh" Erwin tosses a ball during practice.


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D.J. Hitt nails a pad on the blocking sled.


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Coach Brad Smith watches the offensive line drills on Monday.


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Mackenzie Mullins gets cooled off.




Web posted on Wednesday, July 20, 2005











Spotted!

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Updated: 04-Nov-2010 10:01
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