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DCHS football gets additions

The rebirth of Dallas County High School’s football team continues with the addition of new uniforms, new equipment and a new honoree on the football scoreboard.

DCHS first-year coach Darryl Burns said Tuesday his team will be wearing new uniforms for the 2009 season and working out on new equipment.

“Will the players be excited? Absolutely,” he said. “They’re going to be pumped up and they’ll be thrilled about the new stuff.”

Burns had only about five days to get his team ready for the spring game against Autaugaville because he was still working with McAdory High School in McCalla. The Hornets defeated Autaugaville 8-0, and Burns said he was excited by his team’s response to his short time at the school and the way the players had bought into the new system.

Burns also was pleased the Dallas County football scoreboard has been inscribed with the name of former Georgia Tech standout and current Cincinnati Bengal Michael Johnson. Johnson was a defensive end for the Yellow Jackets who starred for the Hornets in 2004.

“We have already put his name on the scoreboard,” Burns said. “He’ll be a positive role model. Everything I hear about him is he’s a good guy.”

Johnson hasn’t had a chance to talk with Burns since the NFL Draft April 25-26. Johnson was taken in the third round by Cincinnati and has been in Ohio since then except for about two weeks.

“It’s a big honor,” Johnson said by phone from Ohio on Tuesday. “I haven’t really talked with Coach Burns. I’ve heard great things, and I think he can get Dallas County back to winning the way it should be.”

Although Burns was coaching the offensive line last year, he has concentrated on the defense. He coached defensive line at Midfield and was defensive coordinator at Midfield, Montevallo, Midfield again and Bibb County. He went 13-8 in two years as head coach at Bibb County.

The feeling isn’t lost on Johnson, who said he’s excited about his potential for the upcoming NFL season.

“I get the opportunity to do what I love to do,” he said, casting aside what other people may write or say about his abilities. “I know what I can do, my teammates know what I can do, and my opponents know what I can do. And my teammates are the ones I am going to stand up with.”