Published 12:03 am Wednesday, February 12, 2014
Straughn is set to begin spring training on Thursday.
The Tigers have always held their annual football spring practice this early in the year because it’s a good time for players who play baseball to get this 10-day period out of the way in order to strictly focus on the diamond sport. Additionally, it’s also a good opportunity for coaches as a whole and for players to get reps on positions they may fill in the future, SHS head football coach Trent Taylor said.
“This time of year seems to work out better for us,” Taylor said. “Coach (SHS defensive coordinator John) Fussell likes it better that way. I think it’s just better for coaches as a whole.
“When you get to May and whenever baseball season is
over at whatever point it ends, things are crazy at the end of school,” he said. “The last thing you want to be doing is trying to practice football.”
Fussell is also the head baseball coach at SHS.
The only negative Taylor said about holding spring training this early is the weather. Originally, the Tigers were slated to begin on Tuesday, but the wet weather curtailed their plans.
The Alabama High School Athletic Association allows high schools 10 days to hold their spring training. Each day, the Tigers will hit the weight room as they normally do during seventh period and then go out and practice from 3:30 until about 5:15.
This year’s spring training goal
s are a bit different, Taylor said.
“We lost 22 seniors,” he said. “Some of them were really good players. Some of them were really good leaders. Each one of them contributed in their own way. There are lot of voids to fill.”
A big void that needs to be filled is replacing three starters on the offensive line. The Tigers have two returning starters coming back next season.
“Those replacements have got to be found,” Taylor said. “That’s priority No. 1.”
The same thing can said about defense, the coach said.
“We lost some really good ones on the defensive side,” Taylor said, noting that the team will be looking for linebackers.
Taylor said he hopes spring training will be finished by the time basketball season ends. The Final 48 Championships in basketball are set for Feb. 25-March 1. Straughn’s Black and Gold game — which signals the end of spring training — will be held Feb. 28.