Just like the high school football players in the area, college football players from this area are back at home and have to work out on their own away from their respective campuses.
As a result, those college stars are being forced to get creative at times to try their best to make up for the missed spring practices and offseason workouts.
Former Enterprise long snapper and offensive lineman Jacob Quattlebaum has been working out a number of times a week with former EHS punter Andrew Osteen and departing EHS senior long snapper Cooper Charlton. All three will be on FBS rosters next season as Quattlebaum heads into his sophomore season with Auburn and Osteen heads to his sophomore season with Central Florida. Charlton will be heading into his freshman year with South Alabama.
“This would be our spring ball (right now), so we have to find some way to get our work in because you can’t go months and months without snapping a ball or picking up a ball,” Quattlebaum said. “You’ll just get out of shape and you’ll lose your rhythm you’ve built up since the season.”
Osteen and Charlton agreed with Quattlebaum’s assessment and Osteen said it was doubly important for him to continue to prove that UCF made the right decision in awarding him with a scholarship last season.
“It’s very big for me because the coaches are looking for me to continue to help the team anyway I can and I have to keep showing them that they made the right decision,” Osteen emphasized.
Quattlebaum said that, for him, working out was just as much about staying in a routine as it was about staying in shape.
“For me, I just like to have a routine,” he said. “Three times a week I would come out and snap (before the shutdown) and I just have to carry that on and do what I can to stay in shape, too.”
If schools hadn’t shut down Charlton would be playing his senior baseball season at EHS but instead he’s now done with classes and is preparing to play college football.
“I just want to keep myself in shape and make sure that before I leave that I’m ready for the summer if we have summer (workouts),” Charlton said. “I just have to make sure I keep my rhythm and make sure my snapping is good. Having these older guys here to workout is a big help because otherwise it would just be me and my dad out here snapping.”
Along with working out and having virtual meetings with coaches, these special teamers are getting creative as they push a car up a small incline to work on strength as gyms continue to be closed.
Former EHS running back Maurice Hicks has been spending his time not only working out on his own but helping current EHS players stay in shape.
“I’ve been working out every day since I got back home,” Hicks said after returning home from North Alabama. “This is everyday life for me but I just want to come out and help put some drills together for these guys, too. I like when (younger players) get in extra workouts away from the school, and to see that work ethic is a big deal to me.”
Hicks has also been training alongside former EHS safety Josh Kelly, as well. Kelly – currently a sophomore at ASA College in Miami – has bulked up and gladly works in one-on-one pass coverage drills with current EHS stars like Josh McCray, Jaylon Webster and Jalen Cunningham.
Former EHS standouts Marcus Jones and Darius Kearse were known as one of the top cornerback tandems in the state their senior year in 2016 and now both are college stars as well. Jones was an All-American at Troy before transferring to Houston and Kearse has been a starting cornerback at Furman since practically stepping foot on campus.
With everything shut down, both returned home to Enterprise and have been working out together alongside Dauphin Junior High assistant coach – and Marcus Jones’ father – Marc Jones.
“It’s very important for us to be out here and not just sitting around because you’ll only get worse, not better, if you aren’t working,” Marcus Jones said. “We have to work everyday because the more you work the better you are, whether it be off the field with film work and stuff like that or getting out here physically working out.”
Kearse said that it’s big for him to come back and workout with his friend and former teammate.
“It’s really fun to be out here and able to work with Marcus,” Kearse said. “Coming from EHS we were starting corners (together) and were trying to make it and make a name for ourselves in college. It’s great. We always push each other to the max.”
Marcus Jones – who was forced to sit out the 2019 season due to transfer rules – said that he felt like doing something small like showing teammates that you’re working out could help them, as well.
“It’s a little thing but people could see one person out here working and jump on the wave,” Marcus Jones said. “It could be posting a picture or video on social media or even just sending it out in a group chat to teammates. That could help somebody get off their behind and make sure they’re working harder, too.”
Former Daleville star Tyler Presley – who is a receiver at Miles College – has used his time to workout with fellow former teammate Kingston Lister – who earned a scholarship to Middle Georgia State – and current DHS stars Sincere McKenzie and Peanut Bloodsaw. The four Warhawks not only work on individual pass drills but also put together grueling conditioning workouts.
Russell Weeks – a departing New Brockton senior – is headed to Army in the summer but has been spending his spring working out with current New Brockton stars.
Departing Daleville senior Jalen White has not been taking his down time lightly either. White, who is getting set to head to Georgia Southern, has been doing individual workouts on his own that include drills sent to him by the Georgia Southern staff along with workouts he put together himself.
White said that he’s been strongly working on his footwork and speed, but he upped the ante recently by acquiring a diesel truck tire and flipping it around a 400-meter track.
“I just wanted to test my will,” White said of adding the tire workout. “There’s nobody out there to tell me to keep going or when I can stop.
“I could have stopped – at one point I felt like stopping – but I just had to get mentally stronger and tell myself to keep going. That’s going to help me be a stronger person mentally and physically.”
While White and other outgoing seniors said it’s certainly disappointing to have senior year ended prematurely, they’re also getting the benefit of being able to concentrate on individual workouts before the summer.
“At least five days out of the week I’m out here, so not having school right now actually helps me,” White said. “I’m benefiting from that.”
White said for college athletes it’s paramount to use this free time to keep working because there is a higher chance at the college level that his peers are doing the same.
“College is a different level,” White said. “Everyone out there is just as gifted as you are, so you have to be out here putting in the work because chances are they’re doing it, too. You have to stay ready and be ready at all times.”