For most people, the summer is their favorite time of the year. For Waxahachie’s Gennard Johnson, it was a grind.
The senior lineman has been putting in all the hard work it takes to get ready for the season, and now he’s one step closer as his final road to state began Monday with the Indians’ first fall practice.
“I’m glad football’s back. I’m loving it,” Johnson said. “I was out (at Lumpkins Stadium) every day wearing my long sleeves and trying to get ready and tone my body up a little bit.”
While he’s dropped some of the weight, he will still be a giant anchor of both the offensive and defensive lines this year.
“We’ve just got to keep on working. I’ve worked hard for four years and now day one of my last year is in the books,” Johnson said. “It would mean a lot to go out with a great year, but we owe so much for the people that have already graduated. We want to leave a legacy for these younger guys to look up to and follow.”
Johnson isn’t the only one ready to get back to work, Indians’ football coach David Ream is glad to have football back on his daily agenda. Despite the summer break, Ream thinks the team picked up right where they left off in the spring.
“We just threw everything at them, practice-wise, like we normally would on a game week and they took it pretty well,” Ream said. “We’re hitting the ground running. You don’t want to have to do too much reteaching if you don’t have to.”
While Monday’s practice was mostly a walk through as the players started with conditioning tests and broke down into position drills, Ream said it won’t be long before they are looking like they are ready to get back to normal practices.
“We’re just going to go back and add the plays that we did in the spring in the same order and get the ball rolling again,” Ream said. “The conditioning part of practice went really well. Even our big guys went through it really well and I think it was one of the best that we’ve ever had.”
The strong first day should lead to a great two weeks of practice before the Indians scrimmage Rowlett Aug. 24 at home.
“We hope this day sets us up pretty good, but usually the year starts with two good days, then they hit the wall on that third one,” Ream said. “The fourth day they will struggle with their legs before they finally get back under them. We are excited to get it started and we felt good today.”
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