Football teams getting that Week 1 feeling

Football teams getting that Week 1 feeling


Football teams getting that Week 1 feeling


For the past three weeks, football teams around Ohio have been preparing for the season by lining up against their classmates, going against athletes in the same jersey they are wearing.

At best, players have had the opportunity to scrimmage other teams. But those glorified practices are a far cry from the intensity of an actual game.

In most ways, Monday was no different as teams continue to practice against themselves. However, there was a different air at area practices. It’s the first game week of the season and while the changes are difficult to describe, something about the start of this week carries a dissimilar mood to the three weeks leading up to it.

“It definitely feels different,” Lancaster senior linebacker Josh Cook said. “You’ve been going against your own team for so long and now you’re finally scouting to go against a team that’s not your own. It has a different feeling.”

Golden Gales coach Rob Carpenter has gone out of his way to ensure this week mirrors last. The team approached last week like a game week leading up to Friday’s scrimmage with Beechcroft to begin to establish some continuity. But nothing can truly replicate a game week experience.

Lancaster visits Logan on Friday to play a Chieftain team it beat by 50 points in the 2013 season opener. Like all teams, the practices this week will fall in a sweet spot of emotions. Optimism still runs rampant — every team is undefeated, after all — but that comes with a mixture of excitement and anxiety about how the season will unfold.

Those emotions, if properly channeled, are what Carpenter said sets football apart.

“High school football is a lot of technique, but it’s still a lot of heart and soul and just emotion,” he said. “That’s the great thing about football is an average kid can be a Friday night football hero. It’s a great thing.”

 The Lancaster football team lines up to run a play during Monday’s practice.

The Lancaster football team lines up to run a play during Monday’s practice.

Those emotions are strongest in the seniors, who have been working years for 10 opportunities to prove they are worth an 11th game in a season. The first of those chances is this week.

Quarterback Alex Butsko said there is a greater sense of purpose for the seniors.

“Finally,” Butsko said of the arrival of Week 1. “Walking in and realizing, it’s almost like a ritual. This is the first week this year that we are are walking in here and preparing for a Friday night scene, but yet we come in and it’s almost like you’ve been doing it.”


Twitter: @BWilliamsLEG


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