Southside High School football player Devante Brown does squats as teammate Cameron Dimbo (62) spots him. The Panthers were forced inside due to thunderstorms on Wednesday, but were still able to get in some strength training as they continue to get ready for the 2012 season. -- Robert Hudson

Southside motivated as football practices underway

Published 11:15pm Wednesday, August 8, 2012

While afternoon storms kept them off the field on Wednesday, that didn’t stop the Southside High School Panthers from going to work.
The Panthers took to the weight room on Wednesday due to late afternoon storms. It was just another day in their preparation for the 2012 season, as they were among the many Alabama High School Athletic Association teams to get started on Monday.
Daniel Flowers, head football coach of Southside High School, said the players have given a lot of effort so far in practices and they’ve been learning plays faster than expected.
“The kid’s have got good energy, nobody’s been absent and we’ve been solid at about 58 [players] every single day,” Flowers said. “It’s good to get these freshmen to come out now. Schematic wise, the guy’s are picking up stuff faster than I thought they would. I thought we were going to have to spend a few days on one or two plays, but we’ve put in about nine or ten plays and these guy’s have got them, they’re running them.”
Flowers added the players have been motivated by a will to win, which is apparent in their work on and off the field.
“As far as the motivation aspect of it, the kid’s are very motivated — they want to win,” Flowers said. “Like I said last time, these guys are like a sleeping giant. They want to win and I can tell by their work in the weight room. You don’t hear no griping, no complaining about what they’ve got to do.”
As the Panthers will put on full equipment for the first time on Thursday, Flowers said the coaches will be looking to teach the basics.
“The main focus tomorrow [Thursday] is we’re going to focus on tackling — teach guys correctly how to tackle, keep their head up, shoulders down, head outside the shoulder of the ball carrier,” Flowers said. “Also, we’ll be working on blocking schemes and showing them how to do it with no holding.”
Flowers added the first practice in full pads will also determine who’s serious about being a Southside Panther.
“It’ll also be a lot of contact. I want to see who really wants to play,” Flowers said. “You’ve got a lot of ‘talk guys’ and a lot of guys who really want to play. Tomorrow is going to separate the football players from the regular guys. I want football players, not guys. I’d rather have 25 football players than 70 guys.”
Flowers is also aiming to have the offense and defense scrimmage during Friday’s practice in order to see how they react to a game-like situation and plays they haven’t seen before, as both sides have been practicing on opposite sides of the field to keep their plays hidden.
Southside is also looking to host a jamboree game on its campus on Thursday, Aug. 23 in order to prepare one week before the regular season starts.

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