The Missouri Military Academy varsity football team made its' 2018-19 debut Saturday evening at home when the team hit the field for an intrasquad scrimmage designed to accomplish several things.
Even though head coach Mitchell Jenkins put out the call on Facebook for a DJ willing to donate their time somewhat last minute, only to come up empty handed, one reason this event took place was to try and continue the process of setting this squads depth chart.
"Everybody is healthy and that's what matters. We're good. I think we're two deep at every position, but we'll know more after the jamboree on Friday," said Jenkins. "We'll watch the film here in a little bit and get a better idea, but I think we are two deep now. We're pretty solid."
One of the features of the Fighting Colonels attack during this event was a single back offense that featured Matt Thibodeau, and even though the first two plays were fumbled handoffs from quarterback Wrayvuz Givens, everything went much smoother after that.
"Thibodeau is ready to go. He was a little sloppy taking his handoffs, but we'll correct that this week," Jenkins said.
In order to keep the quarterbacks healthy at this event, those individuals wore white jerseys instead of blue like the rest of the team and while everyone else was getting tackled the quarterbacks were considered down with one-hand touch. The school is also amidst late registration so there were players that had only been on campus for a day or two.
"They're wearing practice jerseys. Number 16 is Fernandez. He is from Mexico," said Jenkins. "He's fighting for playing time just like everybody else. He's learning our system so we're getting there."
One player who could stand out for MMA this season is Givens because he lives in Mexico, so he was on campus a lot this summer and was at all of the teams offseason training sessions. As a returning letterman Givens doesn't appear to be overwhelmed by any of what Jenkins has been asking of him. Now its just time to see what happens when all eyes are on him.
"Givens is doing what he is supposed to do. That's all you can ever ask of Wrayvuz," Jenkins said.
It's not uncommon in a format such as this for squads to forgo special teams in order to avoid the time and injuries that could potentially be incurred. The way Jenkins handled this was once the scrimmage was complete he allowed his guys a short break then it was right back on the field for some high speed drills that included field goals and extra points.
"(Our special teams) are pretty solid. We got a couple transfers in. They look like small college kickers," said Jenkins. "We're feeling really good about our special team game."
Next up for MMA this weekend is a trip to St. Louis for a jamboree. As for how Jenkins plans to prepare for that event, the things he's more worried about include avoiding injury and getting better as a team overall.
"We're going to the St. Louis Public League Jamboree. This event will include Carnahan. We're not really worried about this event. We're more focused on North Callaway in two weeks," Jenkins said. "We're not going to prepare for the jamboree at all."
The rest of the format for this event included three 12-minute quarters. Then, once everything was complete all of the cadets grilled hamburgers and hot dogs outside of the fieldhouse. As for depth, unless the team gets any more interest in the next couple days it will be going into week one at the Thunderbirds with 25 players.
"Quarterbacks weren't live all night, but we flew around well and we did the right things. The barbecue is definitely about comraderie. Some of these guys haven't seen there family in several weeks," said Jenkins. "We just need to do some family stuff. It's going to be great. Now we're off for the rest od the weekend and return to practice Monday. As for this event, C plus."