Madison Academy prepares for early gamePublished 11:56am Thursday, August 14, 2014
By Nick Sellers | Staff Reporter
MADISON – With the nationally televised game against Leeds coming up on Aug. 22, the Madison Academy Mustangs have upped the intensity in practice and sped up the pace on offense, senior quarterback Blake Coward said.
“We had to pick up the intensity because we don’t have a jamboree and our first game is on live television,” Coward said. “So that makes it a lot more harder but it also makes it a lot more fun.”
The Leeds Green Wave was the team that met Madison Academy in last season’s 3A championship game. ESPNU has picked up the game as part of its high-school kickoff weekend.
Star running back Kerryon Johnson was used in a variety of sets at the afternoon practice on August 13. Johnson took snaps in the wildcat formation, sometimes handing it off to junior Malik Miller and other times keeping it up the middle.
Johnson, who doubles as a starting safety, continues to line up wide for Coward as well, giving offensive coordinator Chris Hirschfield multiple weapons on offense.
“We just keep getting better and better and I feel like we have a lot more tools and plays we have from this year to last year just with the experience back and stuff like that,” Coward said.
After losing three key offensive linemen from 2013 the Mustangs worked red-zone offense at the practice, having to retool some of the packages and schemes from last season.
“This year we’re going to have to execute perfectly,” coach Eric Cohu said.