Football Readies for NCS Title Defense with Summer Training


Steven Wetterholm, Staff Writer

The football season commences well before the fall kickoff, with camps and practices during the summer.

Varsity head coach Kevin Macy explained that “there is something happening every day of the summer for Cougar football.”  On June 9th, the varsity and JV teams head to Reno for a camp where they have the opportunity to compete against other California schools, as well as schools from Idaho, Nevada, and Oregon.

Following the Reno trip, the 2012 Conditioning Camp will start in late June for the freshmen, JV, and varsity teams.  Former USC Trojan football player Frank Candela runs this camp, which focuses on proper weight training techniques and conditioning drills.

The freshman summer football camp is scheduled for July 9th through July 20th for incoming players.  Run by coach Macy and freshman coach Bob Wilson, the teaching of fundamental football skills, conditioning, and team building will be the focus.  Following this camp, the month of July culminates in passing league tournaments, as well as speed, weight, and agility training.

After a winning 2011 season, which included an NCS championship victory, the 2012 varsity football team starts official fall practice a week earlier this year.  The JV team will start on August 6th, followed by freshmen practice on August 13th.

Junior C.J. Toohey, returning varsity player, feels that after their NCS win, their 2012 training should be more rigorous:  “I feel that we need to train harder.  After last year’s season, we have a large bull’s eye on our backs.  Every team wants a piece of us, so we need to maintain our team unity because it is our greatest strength.”

Coach Macy concurs that the 2012 team faces challenges because of the 2011 NCS championship:  “This year’s team has to be on guard because everyone’s gunning for us.  Every scrimmage, practice against another school, and every game will be treated like a championship game in our opponent’s mind, so we just have to be more prepared for it.”

Toohey explained that the main goals of practices during the summer are to “play basic, hard-working, old-fashioned football.”  After playing Cougar football for the past three years, Toohey’s goals as a team captain are to “make sure that everyone wants to be there, that it’s as fun as possible, and that everyone wants to win.”

Macy concedes that the 2012 team faces personnel challenges, as it will lose many talented graduating seniors:  “We will still have J.J. Ewing on defense, Brett Stephens at quarterback, a couple of linemen, and Mason Windatt as our third receiver, but we’re looking at many new faces everywhere else.”  The biggest challenge, explained Macy, is to piece together a complex puzzle that ensures the right players are matched to every position on the 2012 team.

Toohey’s hopes for the 2012 varsity football season are to maintain team unity and to have fun, because then “the wins will come on their own,” he said.  Macy believes that it would be unfair to expect the 2012 team to replicate the achievements of last season.  “The 2012 team will need to find their own level of success,” Macy explained.

Graduating senior Nate McDonald will always remember his summer football training camps as “great times for team bonding and working on fundamentals and new techniques.”  McDonald will miss his teammates, but noted, “We will be close friends for the rest of our lives.”