Central Montcalm gridders have been busy

By Chip Burch • Last Updated 9:45 am on Monday, July 29, 2013

The Central Montcalm Hornets offense lines up for a play against the Lakeview Wildcats last season. The Hornets went 2-7 in 2012.

STANTON – It’s not like Central Montcalm’s football team has been idle this summer. Far from it.

The Green Hornets have been doing a lot of things this summer to prepare for their opening game on Aug, 29, noted coach Marty James.

“From the beginning of March until the end of school we had the Terriffic 10 where we had 10 days of 6 a.m. workouts with the idea to build toughness and unity and getting back a work ethic,” James said. “Then we also implemented from that point our lifting program, which we’ve continued throughout the summer.”

Most of that is non-football specific. The football-specific stuff came later.

“We had a line camp at the early part of July,” James said. “We’ve been throwing with Montabella. Coach (David) Clay has set up some 7-on-7s every Tuesday. We’re going to finish our football specific stuff with a 7-on-7 at Alma College this Wednesday.”

So far James has liked what the Hornets have done.

“I’ve been very pleased with the effort and the attendance has been very good,” he said. “Most of our guys have been there, which is always good. We’re working hard at making sure we’re ready physically for the season. Your body takes a pounding so we’re trying to prepare for that and preparing physically by doing our running. We’ve had the people there that have needed to be there. We’re trying to move forward. As one of the kids said and I really like it, ‘We’re not going to make excuses, we’re going to make improvements.’ We’ve adopted that theme for the season.”

James has especially been pleased with how hard Central has been working.

Central Montcalm quarterback Keagan James rolls out for a pass during a game last season.

“Probably the best thing I’ve seen is the effort,” he said. “Like I tell them all the time, we can fix mistakes but we can’t control their effort. They’ve really been pushing it. They’ve worked hard this summer. I thought we’ve improved every time we’ve had a 7-on-7 or a camp. We haven’t gone backwards and that’s always good.”

The Hornets haven’t needed a lot of motivation. The 2012 season was motivation enough, James said.

“I think the kids understand what it feels like to have an unsuccessful season record-wise and they’re doing everything they can to rectify that,” he said. “They want to improve and get better and as a coach that’s all you can ask for.”

James believes Central will be ready for the season when the first official practices begin on Aug. 12.

“If their effort and work ethic so far since March is any indication of them being ready, I think it’s a good indicator,” he said. “I think most of the kids varsity-wise have prepared. Physically I think we’re going to be ready to go. Football is different than any other sport in that you can’t simulate the game itself until the pads go on. We’ll see but physically they are going to be ready.  A lot of our kids are stronger and faster than they have ever been. The rest hopefully will take care of itself.”

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