Local coaches discuss returning to football activities

Posted at 10:46 PM, May 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-26 00:46:30-04

Last week, CHSAA removed its moratorium on Summer athletics, allowing high schools to begin preparing for team-based workouts. On Tuesday, three local head football coaches took the time to discuss what comes next.

"Now that we've run that course, feels like we're ready to get going again," Pulford said.

We're a long way from the lights of Friday night football, but at least in this moment, we've taken a step toward normalcy.

"I don't take it for granted but sure do miss those dudes," Goddard said.

"We've got a lot of work to do this week with our athletic director and our school," Nix said.

Palmer Ridge's Tom Pulford, Pueblo South's Ryan Goddard and Florence's Jeremy Nix are working hard to prepare their players for the fall in these unprecedented times.

"We have a huge responsibility to do our best, make our players and coaches safe," Goddard said.

"They're (CHSAA) doing their best and now the responsibility goes onto our shoulders," Pulford said.

Of course in any decision involving an entire state, there are some serious hurdles and potential competitive disadvantages.

"I think people are going to have to make the best use of their facilities, get creative," Nix said. "Whether its a group of kids assigned to a coach, a time they can come to the school. Can't bring the whole team at least not to start."

With each school district deciding their own protocols on a safe return to the field, there is no uniform decision on how to operate during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"In this conversation, alone, we have three different start dates," Goddard said.

In what has been a week-to-week process, coaches are trying to plan ahead for an opening weekend that is far from certain.

"Distance from when restrictions are being lifted to our first game is a timeline, that I'm very intentional and cognoscente of," Pulford said. "There are some concerns there if it's a short amount lot of time."

Still, after two months of virtual training, the chance to see their team on the field is a sight for sore eyes.

"What we do, at the end of the day that's the goal, see their faces and get them going," Nix said. "Can't wait."

For three key member of the community, it's a small push forward for what all three hope is a return to grander days on the gridiron.

"That's what we're trying to do and however we need to, we'll get it done," Goddard said.