The fourth annual Forsyth Sports Media Day presented a unique opportunity for fans to get to know their favorite county football players and coaches. Without the layer of helmets and pads, players could let their personalities shine, and coaches could hype up the upcoming season and bask in the optimism that characterizes this time of year. Here are a few of the best quotes we heard from the seven head coaches and 14 players that took to the podium on Wednesday at Lanier Tech.
“We’ve had some good receivers, but we’ve never had this many this good. We’re super fortunate there … The whole group is so much faster and stronger than they were last year, but I think the key to that receiving corps is the confidence that they’re showing.” – head coach Jeff Arnette on the depth and talent of South's receiving corps.
“The parts to the car are just sitting on the garage floor. You haven’t put them on yet, but you’re excited to get it together, see what it’s going to look like. That’s where we’re at right now.” – head coach Louis Daniel on the excitement of finally getting all the team's players on the field together.
“I wasn’t trying to make it a big thing for the media or anything. It was just, this is where I wanted to play. I knew that I wanted to go to Duke … so I just took it.” – senior receiver Nicky Dalmolin on his decision to commit to Duke as a sophomore. Raiders head coach Robert Craft went on to say that plenty of schools, including Georgia and Alabama, have asked after Dalmolin in the time since his commitment.
“Growing up, that’s what you did. That’s how we did things, and it probably wasn’t until 2000, when I went to Camden County and Jeff Herron and he brought a new philosophy to me on how he liked to practice, and I’ve kind of expanded on that even more. (In) today’s age, slamming kids together: Number one, you can’t do it. GHSA won’t let you do it. And then I just don’t think that it’s something you have to do on a regular basis. I want their legs fresh, and if you want to play 15 games in a season, most of the time it’s the healthiest team that gets there and actually wins.” – head coach Terry Crowder on how his philosophy on practice has evolved over the years.
“They want to get back there again. You go to your favorite steakhouse and you have that steak, and you want to go back there again. You’re not going to say, ‘Oh, I’m not going to go there. That’s my favorite. I’m going to go have this yucky hamburger.’ No, you want to get back to that steakhouse.” – head coach Frank Hepler, deliciously characterizing the Bulldogs' desire to return to the state playoffs.
“Coach Lewis is very thorough. We’ll have a meeting on defense and we’ll only go over cover 3 the whole time. And he goes exactly where every single person’s supposed to be standing, before the ball’s snapped, when the play’s happening and after. So all the stuff he’s taught us throughout the last year has really stuck with us." – senior defensive back/receiver Sawyer Huffstetler on the lasting impact of Tim Lewis, who served as Pinecrest's defensive coordinator in 2018 after a number of high-profile stops, including one with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
“Probably the only time I kind of looked at it and said, ‘What am I doing,’ was when the kid from Hewitt returned the opening kickoff. And nobody in the stadium could have caught that kid. So for about 13 seconds I was like, ‘Ah, this is probably going to sting.’ But after that, our kids buckled down and they did well.” – head coach Shawn Cahill on whether he had any regrets about the team's rigorous non-region schedule in 2018, reliving a scene from the Wolverines' home game against Hewitt-Trussville (Ala.).