The offensive and defensive lines weren’t there, and without pads, the hits couldn’t be as hard.
But football is definitely on its way back.
Area high school football teams participated in the Greater Augusta Fellowship of Christian Athletes’ 7-on-7 Passing League Camp at Greenbrier on Tuesday. On Tuesday nights this month, local athletes got to go up against one another while learning their teams’ styles and testing different formations.
“It’s good to get these reps in the summer,” Greater Augusta FCA Area Director Greg Wilson said. “Schools not in 7-on-7s are falling behind. It’s all the rage.”
Though this Tuesday’s action was threatened and halted by the weather, schools like Josey, Westside, Greenbrier, Cross Creek and others still got in some work.
With coaches looking on and providing encouragement or advice, quarterbacks hoped to hit receivers, while defensive backs tried to get in the way of passes.
“Offensively, it’s really good for the quarterbacks and wide receivers to get their timing down,” said Cross Creek coach Robert McCarty, who’s about to begin his first season as the Razorbacks’ head coach.
Before the action started, speaker Bernard Grant of the FCA enthusiastically spoke to the players. Grant, a former University of South Carolina football player, told the listening student-athletes to honor, obey and respect their parents, coaches and teachers. As the players kneeled around him, Grant wasn’t afraid to crouch down and look a person in the eyes to deliver his message.
Wilson, who said the passing leagues are a time for perspiration and inspiration, was pleased with this year’s turnout.
As for the coaches, they enjoyed the opportunity to watch some of the less experienced players excitedly challenge each other.
“We play a lot of young kids, so they get to see different looks,” Richmond Academy coach Chris Hughes said. “The things you see here you may never see in a game, but you see formations and the kids compete.”