Wolver­ines ramp up in­ten­sity with pads on

Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette - - HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL -

BEN­TONVILLE — The big­gest dif­fer­ence in West’s sec­ond week of pre­sea­son drills was the abil­ity to get more ag­gres­sive dur­ing prac­tice, which comes with be­ing able to put on pads.

“The first week, with no pads, kind of elim­i­nates some of the things you can do,” Wolver­ines coach Bryan Pratt said. “So we took care of spe­cial teams and some of the fun­da­men­tal stuff. When you get the pads on, you can start tack­ling.

“I think that’s our em­pha­sis. We’re now hav­ing com­pet­i­tive parts in our prac­tice where we go goods-on-goods. It’s been good for us, and we couldn’t do this last year be­cause we couldn’t pla­toon. It’s been good for us to com­pete and good for our kids.”

Un­like the sum­mer work­outs, when West suf­fered some se­ri­ous in­juries, the Wolver­ines have just a few mi­nor bumps and bruises af­ter the more ag­gres­sive work­outs. Line­backer Hunter Swo­boda, mean­while, is out of the walk­ing boot af­ter his sum­mer in­jury, and it looks more promis­ing that he can re­turn for the sea­son opener against Pryor, Okla.

“The bumps and bruises, we can live with that.” Pratt said. “We know we’ll have those, and we’ve talked to our kids about get­ting treat­ment, and our train­ers do a phe­nom­e­nal job. Right now, we’re do­ing OK with in­juries. I’m hop­ing they will stay away.”

Pratt said West will be­gin to get more into a game-week sit­u­a­tion when prac­tice re­sumes Mon­day as stu­dents head to class.

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