By Jeremy McDonald
GERVAIS, Ore.– There’s a sense of like a double-head sword about not having a jamboree this season for the Gervais Cougars.
With the Woodburn Jamboree being canceled, the Cougars Football team used the time to get right for Sheridan on September 1 and for someone like Chazz Fobert, it just gives them more time to focus on the Spartans than worry about another team or two at a jamboree.
“It made us work on more of the Sheridan game than the jamboree games,” said Fobert. “So we’re been going up against Sheridan’s defense and that helps us focus on them. You know we’re going to play to them and not who we’re going to play last week.”
But, senior Mike Guido, he would rather have one so he could savor his final year of football and see how they are looking as a unit and how they could improve upon between then and now.
“I don’t think it’s a benefit not having a jamboree,” said the nearly 300 pound lineman. “I would love to go to a jamboree, it would gave us a chance to work on what we need to work on, a change to improve. If we made any mistakes there, then we could improve on them, but now we never know because there like games.
“I think it’s kind of disappointing, I really wanted to go to the jamboree, if I had anything to improve on, that’ll be a good time to improve on it. I can see the relief side of it…but I would like to play as much as I could, it’s my last year playing so I’d like to play in as much games as possible. But that extra practice was nice.”
As Fobert pointed out, the time spent away from a jamboree has helped the team focused especially with the skills group that features some speed and power this season for the Cougars of G-Town.
“I think we’re doing better, we’re faster, we know what we’re doing this year,” said Gudio. “We’re catching more, we’re getting off our blocks. Stopping guys when we need to. I feel like we’re doing a lot better as skills guys.”
For the line, there’s something special brewing there as the team huddles up at the end of practice as they know that something special is brewing starting with this Friday Night at home.
“The lineman got a lot of work skilled during practice, blocking and all that,” starts Gudio on having the extra time and the last three weeks as a lineman unit. “Individual work. I mean that was nice to have.”
“Heart and we’re actually a family this year. Everyone get’s along, we’re a family and when I played my sophomore year, it wasn’t a family. It was just a team. Now we’re a family, everyone’s having fun, everyone connects,” Gudio describes this special feeling that’s a-coming Friday Night.
As Head Coach Josh Crawford was telling his team that all of their hard-work was about to hit due on the cash register, it’s almost time to cash that check that is this season.
Gervais knows that this is the time to shock some teams that this squad, win-less in 2015, a two-win team in 2016, could quite possibly double that win total in 2017 if not go up-and-beyond that win total?
One thing is for certain, those Boys in those White and Blue practice uniforms believe in it, and certainly their Head Coach and their coaches do to that this year is gonna be something speculator.
“I don’t know if I’ve been more excited for anything to be honest,” starts Crawford with a smile and a laugh with his Gervais hat on backwards. “My boot-camp graduation from the Marine Corps and Friday night (Crawford illustrated a difference between the two with his hand), it’s one and two right now.
“It’s like watching your kid walk for the first time, it really is. Like they were crawling in February and now we’re about to start running.”
Kick off is at 7pm at Gervais High School.