YORK — The York Comprehensive High School football team gave fans a preview of the coming season during a scrimmage last week at the Cougar stadium.
Cougar fans saw a variation of offensive and defensive groupings during Thursday’s scrimmage. Though he admits there’s a lot to be done, Cougar head football coach Bobby Carroll said he has been pleased with the spring practice sessions, including the scrimmage.
“It’s good to have so many kids involved in football in May,” Carroll said. “We have work to do between now and August. This is May, and there’s time to get it done.”
Carroll said every player on the varsity roster participated in the scrimmage. “The players worked hard during our spring practices,” he said. “We accomplished a lot. The assistant coaches did a great job during our spring drills. It’s not easy to motivate kids to play football in May.”
The Cougars lost nine starters from a defensive unit ranked among the state’s best last season. “I’m not saying we will rebuild or reload for next season,” said Carroll. “We like to think our program has reached the point where we can replace position players.
“We have personnel returning, and our JV team lost only one game last year.”
While the defense left holes to fill, Carroll said the offense has the potential to be explosive, starting with an imposing offensive line.
Rising senior Thomas Broom, a returning offensive center, is one of the smaller linemen. “I tip the scales at 255,” Broom said. “Our smallest lineman weighs 245. We have a 6-foot-5, 300-pound lineman, another at 6-7 in the 275-pound range.”
Broom said a key to the coming season is for offensive linemen to be in top shape. “We’ll continue to work on blocking technique and coming off the ball quicker,” he said. “It’ll take a lot of hard work in the offseason.”
Returning senior running back Ryan Moore, one of the top running threats in the Upstate, said he’s aware it’s what’s up front that counts. “Our offensive line is huge,” said Moore. “They look like buses up front.”
But Moore said the players need to become stronger.
“We’re running a much faster tempo on offense this season,” he said. “We’ll have to be in better shape. We have the potential to be really good on offense. I’m looking forward to it.”
Carroll said the team will need to work on the offensive potential. “It all starts up front with the offensive linemen,” he said. “They’ll have to be ready to rock and roll when August arrives.”
Carroll said intense offseason workouts will continue for a Cougars team that spent most of last season in the state’s class 4A football Top-10 poll. “Our kids have been in the weight room since January,” he said.
With spring practice drawing to a close, Carroll said he is pleased with the numbers. “We have 145 kids playing football,” he said. “Our JV team was 9-1 last season.”
The Cougars open the high school football season Aug. 30 at home against Chester. All games begin at 7:30 p.m. for the 2013 season, and there will be a rare open date Sept. 6.