Friday, August 16, 2013

Camp notes: Ringgold

They bickered like an old, married couple.

"Make sure that goes on the record," Ringgold football coach Matt Humbert shouted at practice this morning. "It's the first time Nico admitted he was wrong."

Junior quarterback Nico Law disagreed, insisting he had been wrong before — and admitted it.

This was only one small instance, and not negative at all, but it gave me a look into the world of Humbert and Law, who operate pretty much like two brothers: coach chides player, player throws it back to coach, so on and so forth.

"We're close," Law explained. "He's an older brother; I wouldn't say he's like another father figure. He's like an older brother because he's a young coach."

That relationship has extended to Sunday diagram sessions, to lifting and conditioning and even a post-practice meeting Friday in Humbert's office. They talk a lot. Humbert, an ex-quarterback himself, wouldn't have it any other way.

"I know Nico might consider me his older brother, and I think the reason is that we're together constantly," Humbert said. "Since January, we've been around each other around four days a week. He's a kid who has all the tools. He can throw the ball well. He can run the ball well. He has a great football IQ."

I didn't get to see a whole heck of a lot down at Ringgold today, mostly just a bunch of walk-through stuff, but Law certainly impressed. After being thrust into a starting role last year, he has bulked up quite a bit and has become more of a leader.

>>Humbert raved about the quality of this camp, pegging it to the amount of competition at several positions. Pretty much every one, save for Law's spot, is up for grabs.

"There are a lot of kids competing for positions, so they're less likely to screw around," Humbert said. "I don't have to allocate 15 minutes of practice every day to punish the kids and run 'em because five kids can't control themselves."

>>Wide receiver/linebacker Dayshore Majors returns and steps into Joey Wall's role. Wall did a little bit of everything last year: four rushing touchdowns, two receiving, two picks, three fumble recoveries and 55 tackles. Look for big things out of Majors.

>>Sophomore Chacar Berry is a first-year varsity player after starting at running back on the JV squad last season. He could lead a talented four-man group taking over for Demetrius Louis.

>>Linebacker Matt Kirby returns after making 62 tackles. Connor Gary is also back inside.

>>Alan Pritchett, who had 50 tackles and two sacks at cornerback last year, moves to safety. He'll split time with Jake Gerard at the outside receiver spot opposite Majors on offense.

>>Majors said this year's camp has been better than any in recent memory, and there's been an interesting reason for the about-face.

"A lot of hitting," Majors told me. "Last year, we didn't hit at all. This year we hit, and I think that's going to make us a better defensive team."

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