Natchez thrilled with new weight room equipment

Published 11:59 pm Tuesday, April 11, 2017

After posting a 1-10 record last season, Natchez High School began this year’s spring football practice looking to build strength where it hadn’t been before.

The Bulldogs have jumped off to a stylish start after installing a new and improved weight room a few weeks ago, including eight power-lifting stations and two lifting platforms.

Natchez coach Roy Rigsby said the much-needed upgrade replaced equipment that was more than 20 years old.

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“We were falling behind because we weren’t on the same status as other teams,” he said. “In football you can’t get around without physicality. You have to prove you are strong enough for four quarters.”

Rigsby said the request for the new gear was brought up to Natchez-Adams School District Superintendent Fred Butcher just before Christmas time, and after meeting with Butcher, the Bulldogs’ wish was granted immediately.

“At first he didn’t know exactly what he was going to do, but he looked at the situation and had faith in us,” Rigsby said. “It means a lot to these kids that he bought into them and made that decision even after our poor season. It gives us a spark.”

The motivation didn’t stop there, either.

Rigsby said Bulldog lifting coach Nickie Davis proposed an idea to reward players with a workout shirt with the words “Iron Dog” printed on the front as a little extra incentive. Rigsby said coaches will decide on just two players each week to be honored with the shirt during spring workouts.

“It’s to set an example for everyone else,” he said. “It shows that you are the best at what you do during that particular week.”

Junior middle linebacker Cedric Davis has already received the “Iron Dog” award and said the renovation has already made the Bulldogs more focused as a team.

“I’m really happy because it’s a lot better organized,” he said. “It feels good to know someone is still believing in us.”

Natchez High’s spring football game is set for 2 p.m. on May 13 vs. McComb.