Ready! Set! Football!: Trojans begin campaign on the practice fieldWORTHINGTON — The first week of Trojan football has officially begun. The Worthington Trojans took to the field Monday morning for the first of many practices before the start of the regular season on Aug. 31.
By: Jordan Willi, Worthington Daily Globe
WORTHINGTON — The first week of Trojan football has officially begun. The Worthington Trojans took to the field Monday morning for the first of many practices before the start of the regular season on Aug. 31.
For head coach Brad Grimmius, the most important thing about training camp is getting his kids back in shape and knocking off the rust that piled up this summer.
“The big thing is to get everybody back on their feet and get them in condition here the first week,” Grimmius said. “Then we have to get back to fundamentals. Teaching technique and teaching the whole system we are putting in from part to whole.”
The first day of practice is important for more than just conditioning for Grimmius. It is also when the freshman class gets the chance to acclimate themselves to the Trojan way of playing football.
“Today is a day to get the freshman up to speed and learn what it means to step on the field as a Trojan, whether it is practice or a game,” Grimmius said. “But with the returning guys, it is basically to get them back into the rhythm of how we did things and how we run practices.”
Along with bringing the new players into the fold, Grimmius is also watching to see who will rise to the occasion and become a leader for his team.
“Basically we are looking to see who is going to step up and be a leader for us,” Grimmius said. “Obviously, it is going to take more than one day, but you can still get a decent feel for it after day one.”
The Trojan’s graduated six players last year, including the starting quarterback and receiver in Lucas Henning and Mitch Weg, as well as linebacker Tanner Rogers. The passing combination of Henning and Weg will be sorely missed. Weg broke the WHS school record for receptions (84) and receiving yards (1,222) in his career with the Trojans.
“We returned quite a few,” Grimmius said. “We have a solid core for the guys who are coming back. They are hard workers and they really go about their work and don’t complain about doing it.”
With the departure of Henning and Weg, Grimmius decided that it was time his team went in a new direction offensively. Instead of primarily working out of the spread offense like they did last season, the Trojans will shift gears and focus mostly on running the ball.
To that end, these first few weeks of practice are crucial for installing the new offensive scheme as well as reshaping the defense to be a tougher, more aggressive unit.
“Basically, we did our offensive install and we put in trap,” Grimmius said. “We will work on one play and spend a lot of time on fundamentals. Then we will add to it and keep on working on it.
“Then, defensively, we will put in a front and a couple of schemes to go with that front. By the end of the week we will pretty much have our defensive playbook in. Offensively, we will have our fundamental, one-on-one plays ready. If we can run those plays well, the offense becomes a matter of trying to stop it.”
With the new offense in place, Grimmius and his coaching staff will be looking for players to step up and fill holes left by graduated players, as well as fill in on the new offense.
“We are looking to see who can step up and fill those spots,” Grimmius said. “Until we put pads on, everyone looks good.”
With the season only a few weeks away, Grimmius wants his team to focus on being tough both mentally and physically on and off the field.
“We work on mental toughness a bunch,” Grimmius said. “Basically we don’t want them to focus on the small things. With our approach this year, we want to be a more physical team. If there is one model for this week and next, it is to get off the football offensively and defensively and get out there and hit someone.”
The one thing Grimmius wants to instill in his team more than anything else is a mentality of being tough that he hopes will show through on the field.
“Basically, in the next few weeks, we want to put in their minds that when they strap on their helmet we want other teams to know that, ‘Hey, they definetly improved from last year,’” Grimmius said.
The Trojans begin the regular season on Aug. 31 at home against Fairmont.
Daily Globe Reporter Jordan Willi
may be reached at 376-7335.