By Jay Neal
Possibly the largest casting call this side of Hollywood continues to take play out daily on the campus of Lon Morris College.
The director of this project is LMC head football coach, Johnnie Richey, and his search is for talented players that will earn a spot onto the first Bearcat football team to take the field in over 60 years.
Around 200 hopefuls are divided into two groups for workout and evaluatory purposes with one bunch hitting the practice fields at 7 a.m. and the other getting started at 9 a.m. The groups work out five days a week, focusing on conditioning, agilities and weight training, under the watchful eye of Richey and members of the Bearcat coaching staff.
“We’ve divided them up into groups and we are going to let the competition determine who plays football for Lon Morris College,” Richey said. “We have been pleasantly pleased with the effort and of the quality of kids we have out here.
“When (the semester) began we didn’t know how many players would even actually show up, and we have had to send a few back home, but overall we are happy about the talent level of a lot of these kids.”
Despite a very wet fall, LMC has two brand-new grass practice fields that are nearly ready, which will enhance the practice program for the Bearcats.
The ‘Cats will be utilizing the old Jacksonville Recreation Center for their weight training complex as soon as renovations are complete and all the equipment is in place.
Richey has a full complement of assistant coaches — Wayne Larson, Michael Collins, Michael Finney, Patrick Gow, Donnie Hogg, Adam Kirby, Jay McCurty, Russell Patterson, Kyle Segler and Mike Thomas — in place now.
The Bearcat coaches are burning the midnight oil in continuing their efforts in the never-ending quest for top-quality talent.
By Jay Neal
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