Chipps greets 41 to Little Buc football practice

TENNERTON – On a blistering day with temperatures hitting the low 90s, Buckhannon-Upshur Middle School coach Dave Chipps welcomed 41 players to the first day of football camp Monday afternoon at the middle school.

“We might have a few more come out, but 41 is  about the right number for us,” remarked Chipps.

Chipps said it will be a busy week one for the Little Bucs as he will be looking for a variety of things.

“We will be looking at several different things this week,” remarked the veteran coach. “The first thing we are going to be looking at is who can run and catch. After that, conditioning will be a big focus as well as fundamentals and footwork. We will also spend time on football knowledge to help them understand the game better.”

Chipps and his staff will also use this first week for setting up their offense and defense.

“We will look to start installing our base offense and defense,” said Chipps. “We are hoping to get in most of the offense as well as getting to know our personnel and where they fit in at.”

One of the biggest challenges for the staff will be rebuilding an offensive and defensive line.

Our biggest challenge will be our line as we have no returning starters back,” stated Chipps. “We do have a lot of good-sized kids ready to compete for those positions. Only time will tell.”

The heat the first week has been a concern for Chipps and his staff.

“We just have to take it slow,” the veteran coach remarked. “And keep them hydrated. Some are not use to this type of heat. We will certainly be monitoring them closely.”

This will be Chipps’ 37th year of coaching.

His staff will be primarily the same as last year.

Back will be assistant coaches Jim Gregory, Zach Fowler and Gene Smithson while Sloan Baisden will begin his first year with the staff.

“Overall, the team seems to have good size and athleticism but we haven’t hit anyone yet.”

The Little Bucs will get their season underway Aug. 29 when they visit Elkins for a 6:30 p.m. kick-off.

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