A glimpse at what high school football practices will look like in 2020

Published: Aug. 4, 2020 at 10:40 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - From a distance, voluntary football camp at Kennedy high school looks like it would any other year. The closer you look, the more changes stand out

“Try to put it on by reaching on the sides, not the front,” Head coach Brian White said to his team while instructing them how to put on their masks.

“We have to re-train kids,” White said. “A new way of doing things, you know, like wearing masks and staying away from each other, and just how we interact.”

Before getting to the field, players have to fill out an online health questionnaire and have their temperatures taken both at home and when they arrive to practice, where equipment is regularly sanitized.

“We’re going a little bit above and beyond what the state is asking us to do,” White said. “They said masks are optional. We want to play football so masks aren’t optional.”

To limit direct contact, coaches make sure that each drill is only conducted for less than 15 minutes. Having so much focus not directed on solely the X’s and O’s is an adjustment for everyone.

“It’s really just a privilege to be out here,” said senior offensive tackle Connor Colby. “I’ll do whatever it takes to put the pads on on Friday night.”

“The thought of even not having a season is sickening, so I’m willing to do anything to play this season,” said senior quarterback Max White.

The coaching staff admits that there will be a learning curve but acknowledges that everybody involved is willing to do whatever it takes.

“It’s really not as bad as I thought,” Max White said while talking about wearing a mask underneath his helmet. “I can breathe pretty well and I’m not gonna lie, it looks kind of cool at times.”

“I haven’t heard one kid complain about any of these extra steps. Not one,” Coach White said. “Nobody’s complained about a mask, nobody’s complained about the app, nobody’s complained about temperature, nobody’s complained about water, nobody has mentioned any of that in a negative way and I think that right there speaks volumes of the fact that the kids are all in.”

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