PROGRESSING NICELY: Cougars building up the basics before season kicks off

“Our mantra this year is rise up. Rise to the occasion and raise your play to the moment.” Adam Hass KHS head coach

Going into the offseason, Keys’ football’s head coach Adam Hass knew he had a young team.

Even though his team is more experienced than the roster from a year earlier, Hass knows the Cougars have a lot of underclassmen on the roster that are going to play serious minutes.

While this might not be an ideal situation, one of the best things a coach can see is a young team progressing in the right direction.

A big part of the equation for a coach is getting their players to buy into the program and it does not seem like the Cougars have that problem.

“The summer has been really good, the kids are working hard. We have had really good numbers and participation. It is everything you want out of summer,” said Hass.

During the Cougars’ summer practices and seven-on-seven passing leagues, Hass hammered home the fundamentals to his young team.

The Cougars traveled to Checotah and Sallisaw as a part of the seven-on-seven league.

Seven-on-seven leagues are no contact, without pads, and no offensive or defensive lineman. While these leagues do not allow for the full pressures that come with an offensive

and defensive line it still allows teams to implement the playbook and fundamentals while getting their legs ready for the season.

“The boys went and competed and competed well. Last year we were super young, we are older this year but we still have some youth,” said Hass.

“We were working on the basics and getting all the fundamentals down. We got better as the season went on.”

Hass saw big improvements from his team across the board during the league. While one unit from the Cougars has not shined above another, Hass thinks his whole team has progressed well.

“I don’t know if I could single out one group,” said Hass. “I think we had big jumps of progression in every position group.”

While he was not able to find one group that stood above the rest, Hass was impressed with the mentality he saw from his team. Once the season hits he believes this mindset will shine through.

“I think I learned that we have some real competitors on this team,” said Hass.

“We have a lot of young guys but through the offseason, I have learned these kids are true competitors and it is starting to come out.”

Teams could not practice for nine days until July 10 due to the Oklahoma Secondary Schools Activities Association’s dead period.

Even after the dead period ends the Cougars will not open practice until Monday, August 7.


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