By Gracie Holder
As beach towels are rolling out, sun shades are dropping down, and sno-cones are piling high, helmets are being put on. The sound of the all too familiar clashing and knocking is present for those to hear—spring football is here. The Chisholm High School Longhorns began their spring football season the third week of May. The upcoming season leads one to question the anticipating season and all of its components: new coaches, fundamental keys, and yes—sweaty athletes.
A premiere and familiar face at Chisholm, Coach Justin Savage, has been asked to bring some insight into the upcoming season. Being involved with both the junior high and high school football associations—specifically as the head coach of JH and an offensive and defensive line coach for HS—the past 6 years, Savage has experienced what it means to be a Chisholm Longhorn on the field and off as a teacher in the high school.
When asked about the spring football season, Coach Savage said: “Considering all of our coaching changes and new faces on the team, I think the early spring season is going really well.” The new head coach for CHS football is Lyle Welsh—arriving from Oklahoma Bible Academy’s football program as well as being the head coach for Fairview and Pond Creek-Hunter—claiming state titles at both. Coach Savage also commented on the potential growing pains with the infiltration of new faces but expressed how these temporary adjustments would contribute to a new horizon. “Honestly, the year is going to contain many growing pains; aspects such as patience, self-discipline, and positivity will be essential to getting through to them. However, I believe this will lead to the growth that our program needs.”
As for what highlights Coach Savage is eager to encounter, the topic of renewed ideas and collaboration leads him to believe success will follow. “Both the freshman and new coaches have been pleasurable to work with. The freshmen are excited to be involved and a part of things, and in turn, the new coaches have brought different ideas that seem to fit really well with what we have already been doing defensively. Offensively, our traditions have transformed, but the kids seem to favor and respond to the new ways well,” Savage stated.
Lastly, the vigor and criteria for competitiveness in this upcoming football season rely on not only athleticism but hard work according to Coach Savage. Speaking towards the importance of consistent work ethics, Savage said: “It’s a huge factor, not just in this year’s success but in years to come, workouts can prepare athletes for competition, but they also prevent injuries that truly quantifies and leads to accomplishments. This is evident, as a coach, to see this past season as COVID largely affected summer pride; athletes who were unable to workout as routinely were more prone to abrasions during the season. Because we have been fortunate to have a start to our workouts and spring season this year, hopefully, this will show in the fall season”.
The CHS Longhorns are looking forward to their fall season, but as for now, they completed a successful spring camp on May 27th & 28th. Go and support the Longhorns in the heat this summer and be sure to cheer them on as well in the fall!