The New Brockton Gamecocks strapped up in full pads for the first time last week and even held a full team scrimmage on Aug. 7.
New Brockton coach Zack Holmes said that he was happy to see the way his team responded to the heat last week.
“I thought it was really good and they responded well to the heat,” Holmes said. “We went to the afternoon for practices after being in the mornings and obviously the heat is a concern, but I thought they adjusted really well.
“We had a long scrimmage on Friday and everyone did pretty good with that. Some guys struggled with the number of plays they had to play but I think we’re about where we should be right now.”
Holmes said that he’s proud of the level of depth the Gamecocks have this season as it can only help fuel competition during team drills and scrimmage.
“For the inexperienced guys they need all the reps they can get and we’re deep enough that the competition is really good in team drills,” Holmes said. “It’s been cool to watch them continue to get better every day.”
New Brockton running backs Jordan Tacey and JaMarcus Brown turned heads during Friday’s scrimmage as both ripped off long touchdown runs. With the loss of last year’s leading rusher Kyan Horne, Holmes said that the Gamecocks’ may have found the replacement for his production.
“I feel good about both of those guys. Both of them will be good players for us,” Holmes said. “I thought JaMarcus did an outstanding job on both sides of the ball and the runs they had in the scrimmage – which goes back to the offensive line some – were big.
“We came in wondering if we would have one tailback but I think we have two, which is really cool.”
Brown and Tacey offer two differing running styles that Holmes said New Brockton will also benefit from. Tacey is a shifty back with track speed, while Brown is a bruising downhill runner. Despite being a power back, Brown also showed off his speed on a long touchdown run in the scrimmage, as well.
“Both of those guys are going to be able to help us tremendously and I think their running styles being different is going to give defenses trouble,” Holmes said. “You better know which one is in (the game) because they run the ball differently and both of them can make you pay. I was glad to see that top end speed from JaMarcus on that long run, too.”