High school grid season opens tonight

A mere 18 days ago, young football players stepped on to the football practice field for the first time. Last weekend, teams got a taste of hitting someone other than their own teammate in controlled scrimmages. And tonight, the 2014 high school football season opens across New York State.

The scrimmages were the first indicators for a coach to determine any strengths or weaknesses. On offense, the playbook was limited to the most vanilla of plays, just in case any opponents were scouting the scrimmages. And for the defenses, it was much the same approach with few blitzes, stunts, and confusing pass coverages.

We asked all six of our area coaches what they thought of their respective scrimmages, and all six found positives to build on for the regular season.

"I thought the first team handled itself well, especially on the line," said Sherburne-Earlville coach Mike Jasper, whose club posted the area’s best winning percentage last year with a 7-1 record.

Sherburne-Earlville was at the same scrimmage as Norwich and Walton. Norwich's second-year head coach, Mike Chrystie, liked the early execution of his offense. "Sherburne-Earlville and Walton are physical teams, and I thought we moved it well against both of them," Chrystie said.

Greene and Oxford were also at the same scrimmage, and both clubs are coming off less-than-satisfying seasons in 2013. At least on defense, both head coaches were pleased.

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