Coosa looking to shore up depth in Spring gamePublished 11:00am Thursday, May 15, 2014
Last season was a bit of a learning experience for the Cougars of Central High School – Coosa County.
This year, the team expects those lessons to pay off, as the team heads into 2014 with a sizable senior class and – for the fresh faces of last year’s 3-7 campaign – a newfound sense of comfort.
“It’s going pretty well,” said Cougars football coach Richard Bell. “Our numbers are down a little bit, but the guys we have are coming along good.”
Most of those in the blue and white have shown signs of improvement, Bell said.
He added that several key players have made significant strides as team leaders.
“Tre Royal, Andrew Hammond and TyJustin Gaddis are taking ownership of this team,” Bell said. “Each guy has become a much better leader, and it’s easy to see.”
Bell said he was excited to see what Hammond would do in 2014. After some growing pains in 2013, the junior will enter his senior season as the unquestioned starter under center.
As a result, Bell said, Hammond has made notable strides and is appearing more in control of the offense.
“He’s become a lot more confident,” Bell said. “He’s been watching film and taking that leadership role with the team. He’s not looking over his shoulder anymore, and as one of our upperclassmen, I expected him to approach the season just as he has.”
As far as those emerging, Bell said that the son of former All-State performer and Coosa standout Adalius Thomas figures to make an impact.
“Devin Thomas looks like he’s going to start at one of our linebacker spots,” Bell said.
While certain positions are set for the Cougars, there are two areas of note that Central-Coosa wants to improve on.
One of those areas is the last line of defense. After losing Kyle Edwards – who led the team in picks – and Marquise Simmons from the secondary, the onus is on the Cougars’ defensive backs to step up alongside Gaddis
“We want to try and establish some depth there,” Bell said. “Especially with losing the quality of players we have had over the past couple of years.”
Additionally, the Cougars will have a new-look offensive line in 2014, as it replaces four of five starters.
“We have to get that solidified, as I believe that your offensive line is your whole team,” Bell said. “The kids are learning really well, but we have to see what they’ve got.”
Coosa concludes its spring sessions with its Blue vs. White intra-squad game tonight. The game starts at 7 p.m.