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High school football programs preparing for upcoming season despite coronavirus, unusual circumstances

The coronavirus has made virtual meetings a day-to-day reality amongst companies, schools and even football teams… like our local programs preparing for the upcoming season.

"It's important for me to see their face, make sure they're ok, make sure they're healthy and happy. You know, they're young and resilient, and when we get a chance to play football again, they'll be ready to go," said James Dockery, head football coach at Xavier Prep.

"At least, if we can't still be together, we can provide them the opportunity to get better and also make sure we sound up the mental game," said La Quinta football coach Patrick Rivenes.

"I always say to the guys, watch this game coming up on here if you can and we'll break down the plays that they're running that are similar to ours and that's really cool. Kids like that, especially, like when you see the Chiefs running a lot of the same concepts we do," said Coachella Valley's coach Brett Davis.

It's not just virtual meetings, but workout plans too, in an effort to replace traditional offseason programming.

"Our kids know what it takes, they know how we run our program, they know what the expectations are in the off season, so I'm pretty confident, especially with the amount of communication we have with our guys that they're staying on top of stuff and they're going to be ready," said Palm Desert Head Coach Shane McComb.

But local football coaches say the situation is far from ideal…

"I would love to be able to say, our guys are still crushing it in the weight room right now, but not every kid is blessed with having a gym in their house. Kids come from all walks of life, so some have and some don't," Dockery said.

"There's no substitute for actually being together and practicing, getting the camaraderie of everybody around you, building the team, seeing what guys can do out on the field… that's irreplaceable," Rivenes said.

Right now, summer practices are on schedule, but the coaches acknowledge the ever-changing landscape.

"My biggest concern is kids' bodies being ready for the impact of a football season," said McComb.

"You need to be able to have your body prepared, so I'm asking for at least 8 weeks, that's what it would take for me to get my guys ready," said Dockery.

With adversity, there's also life lessons.

"You're going to deal with so many things in your life that are just not good and that are not cool, and our kids are being able to learn that first hand right now, not only through the game of football, but just right now in their own homes," said Rancho Mirage head coach LD Matthews.

"It'll all work itself out and we'll all get back together. You know, you take some things for granted. When you get in this type of situation those little things we took for granted, you know, maybe kids will realize that and you know, put it all out there for the season," said Dan Murphy, head football coach at Palm Springs High School.

The coaches and players are trying to stay positive, and looking forward to the season, whenever it does start.

"Still no days off, no matter what happens," Rivenes said.

High School Football / High_School_Football / Local Sports Headlines

Blake Arthur

Sports Director Blake Arthur joined the KESQ/CBS Local 2 team in August of 2015. Learn more about Blake here.

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