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Blue Devils compete in passing camps

Fine tuning and route running were the name of the game for the Unicoi County High School football team last week.
The Blue Devils opened up the preseason schedule with three days of 7-on-7 camps, including a two-day stint at Hampton on Friday, July 10, and Saturday, July 11.
“This gives us a chance to compete against somebody besides ourselves,” UCHS head coach Glenn White said. “We saw teams that made up the old-Watauga Conference; good teams with talent like Hampton, Johnson County and Happy Valley.
“I’d love for us to have a camp like this next year, following this camp. It’s really a good outing for the teams. The more you can do, the better.”
UCHS kept busy during the weekend and saw a variety of teams during the 7-on-7 competition, including Johnson County, South Greene, Sullivan North and North Greene.
“We got our guys the experience,” White said, “and that’s what we needed this time of the year. We’re playing a lot of younger guys … both our varsity and junior varsity got reps in, which was very important. Our kids are competitors, I know that. They looked sharp, we’re just working on Blue Devil pride.”
The Blue Devils opened up the month of July with practice after the TSSAA dead period of the offseason. Entering this season the vibe has been positive, according to the head coach.
“The Board of Education has allowed us to hire two new coaches onto the staff,” White said. “We brought on coach (Doug) Cooper and coach (Malcolm) Foreman this year. Doug was one of us, he was at Science Hill last year and came back home. Foreman was a quarterback with Science Hill in the 1970s and coached at David Crockett last year.
“I’ve got eight coaches on staff this year, so I’m able to split up the duties and we have no one standing now. I’m excited about this staff and about the work that’s been put in this offseason.”
The staff for the 2015 season is comprised of White, Foreman, Doug Cooper, Jordan Cooper, Chuck Sutton, Drew Rice, Jason Hensley and Willie Douglass. Brandon Adams, a former Blue Devil, is another addition for the upcoming season, White added.
“Our approach is that our guys are winners and that they come out here and work,” White said. “Our goal is to win and I preach it to the team. … All our coaches are preaching that our goal is to have a winning season this year and our kids have accepted that challenge and I do believe we can achieve it.”
The 7-on-7 schedule concludes on Thursday, July 16, with a 5:30 p.m. start time at North Greene High School in Baileyton. This will be followed by four scrimmages leading up to the Blue Devil season opener on Aug. 21 at South Greene.