Terrebonne coach happy with team's early progress
Thu. May 24, 2012 at 11:12 a.m. | By Kelly McElroy/Staff Writer
Several members of the Terrebonne High football team participate in blocking drills during a May 15 practice in Houma. (Photo by Kelly McElroy/Staff)
--11th in a 13-part series
Terrebonne High football coach Gary Hill was reluctant to throw too much information at his young Tigers early on in spring drills.
With just a handful of experienced seniors heading into the fall, Hill wasn't sure how much Terrebonne could handle during limited time in pads.
But after just a couple of practices, his players forced him to change his mind. "To the kids' credit, we came out to get just a couple of things accomplished, and after the first day and a half, the coaching staff looked at each other and said, ‘If we are going to work like that, we can get a lot more accomplished,' " Hill said. "We challenged them after the first day. We said we are going to change our game plan. We thought they were ready for more."
Hill said spring drills evolved from reviewing fundamentals and going over the basics to installing most of the defense and some of the offense.
"We got to a few more things than we thought we would," Hill said. "The offensive line is all back except for the right tackle, but we have a lot of new skill guys. We do a lot of things with them. We are nowhere near where we want to be, but we are a lot further along than where I thought we would be."
Offensive lineman Jacob Fournier will be a senior next season for the Tigers, who went 5-5 last season and missed the playoffs after qualifying for the postseason three years in a row.
"We have some young guys, but we have been trying to keep the intensity up," Fournier said. "I think we have been doing a pretty good job. We are just trying to get some of the plays crisp and clean and ready for the fall. We lost a lot of seniors, and we don't have too many seniors this year, so we are kind of young."
Hill said the Tigers had a "great" offseason with lots of participation in the weights and conditioning program.
"Our goal is we want to be physical," Hill said. "We were real physical two years ago and it really showed in our (10-2) record. We want to get back to that physical type of play. We want to make people have to play for 48 minutes to have to beat us. I am proud of the way our guys came out in spring with a desire to get better. I am a lot happier with this spring than I have been in the past."
Along the line of scrimmage, Hill said the team's defensive line is expected to be a strength.
William Moses will be senior and one of the most experienced players on the team next season. He will anchor that defensive line.
"It's all about practice and hard work," Moses said. "Coach Hill always tells us that if you want to win, it takes hard work to get there. We are going to get there. We are looking forward to the season."
Moses will be complimented on the defensive line by fellow senior Jeremiah Thomas.
"Spring has been a blessing. We got to see what we will bring to the field. We have a good brotherhood going right now," Thomas said. "We have really bonded. If we can keep it going, it should be good when the season gets here."
Coming Friday: St. James.