Vikings shaping up

Published 12:00 am Monday, October 2, 2006

VIDALIA &8212; Coming off one of the worst seasons in his 38-year career, Vidalia High head coach Dee Faircloth is getting his Vikings into shape.

&8220;We&8217;ve been going nearly two weeks, and we&8217;ve mainly been working on getting in shape,&8221; said Faircloth. &8220;We&8217;ve been doing a lot of running, a lot of throwing and a lot of catching. We do most of those all the time anyway, but we&8217;re doing them a little bit more.&8221;

Vidalia&8217;s young squad finished 3-7 last year, and Faircloth has vowed he won&8217;t see that record again.

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However, this season is now rapidly approaching, and there is quite a bit of work to do in very little time.

&8220;We&8217;re taking on Jena in a scrimmage here next week,&8221; he said. &8220;Then next week we&8217;ve got the jamboree. I&8217;m not really sure yet how our players are looking, but I&8217;ll know more (today). We&8217;re going to get in full pads.&8221;

When his players finally get in pads, Faircloth is looking for plenty of down-in-the-dirt, tough practices for the remainder of the preseason.

&8220;We&8217;re probably going to do a lot of hitting and scrimmaging,&8221; he said. &8220;I want to get back to old Viking football, where they knock you in the dirt and run the ball. We&8217;re going to do a lot of that between now and the jamboree.&8221;

While this year&8217;s team largely consists of last year&8217;s undersized, inexperienced Vikings, Faircloth feels the battle-tested group will get the job done this year.

&8220;I&8217;ve been really impressed with all the hustle we&8217;ve had so far,&8221; Faircloth said. &8220;I&8217;ve been pleased with all the hard work. This is a hard-working bunch. I feel like we&8217;re going to be OK this year.&8221;

Vidalia will officially open its season Sept. 1 at Block.