AUGUSTA, GA -- The high school football season almost never ends in Georgia. Teams basically practice year round. Now, the last week in July, they can go full tilt leading up to putting the pads on next week. In Georgia, this week is called the acclimation period.
Aquinas has been hitting the gym and the practice field 5 days a week this summer. They did take the mandatory dead period off for the Fourth of July, but have otherwise been going non-stop and you don't really hear the kids complaining.
"You just have to love football. Like, some people play for their older people their dads or their grandfathers," said Aquinas senior Jaden Blount.
"We're hydrating and getting our bodies together for the next day," added Aquinas senior and Army commit AJ Williams. "All the practicing doesn't phase us like it might phase other teams."
Some will say all the practice can be too much, but that's just the way it is now a days. For teams and the players themselves to be elite, they have to put in the work. Sure, it can be a balancing act for the coaches, but the kids know what they're signing up for.
"When we have our team meeting before the season and going into the off-season, we're very open and honest," said Aquinas head coach James Leonard. "It's a lot of hard work and you have to be extremely committed to play for us. "
Georgia high school teams go through this non-pad period for five days. Then, its full go with the opening game four weeks away.