you’re there but not really into it all the time.
“I thought last year we were a little clicky, but I don’t think we’re like that way,” Hurst said.
Hurst has done some other things to the program such as changing helmets, and signing the Eagles up for various passing leagues throughout the summer — they finished second in one — and now feels his team is more united than it was a year ago.
One of the closest areas of players on Eastside’s 2012 squad is the offensive line.
The unit features three new starters, but the five-man group has been communicating well and has formed a bond. Obie Mash and Jared Floyd are the two lone returning starters.
The line, and the rest of the offensive unit, will need to be on its toes a bit more this year as the Eagles will be making their spread offense nohuddle.
After sitting down with coaches from Appalachian State, Hurst decided to implement the no-huddle attack in order to change up tempo throughout the game.
“That’s something that I thought about doing the last three or four years,” Hurst said. “With the no huddle, we’re able to speed it up or slow it down. It’s a lot easier on the offensive line not having to run back and forth.”
Spearheading the nohuddle offense will be quarterback Demario Terrell. The junior started two games last year and looks poised for improvement this season.
“He’s probably had as good a summer and offseason as anybody,” Hurst said. “He’s become a leader for us.”
Another offensive player looking to have a big year is running back Alex Smith.
Smith broke out in his sophomore year during the 2010 season, rushing for more than 800 yards.
However last season, Smith broke his arm on the first play of the first game and missed his junior year.
Smith will be the main weapon out of the back field, but will be complimented by Jamondi Smith and Anthony Henderson.
“Those two are going to see the ball a lot too, as well,” Hurst said.
The biggest question on offense for Eastside will come at wide receiver. Cameron Boyd leads the unit, but after him, there are several competing for playing time. Boyd, the Eagles starting quarterback in 2011, starred in Eastside’s preseason exhibition against Heritage grabbing a 75-yard touchdown pass.
Others competing at wide receiver are Lamar Johnson, Isaiah James, Derrick Jackson and Evan House. House, a sophomore, has impressed Hurst and his staff.
“He catches everything thrown at him,” Hurst said. “He’s not a burner guy, but he’s going to catch everything and he’s going to block.”
Eastside’s first test of its Commitment and Together mantra come Aug. 31, against rivals Newton, who has one the last three matchups.