COLUMBUS, GA (WTVM) - "Hey, good workout. Keep it up, man. Let's go!"
The shout came as the Carver Tigers ended their first water break at their first football practice of the fall on Monday morning.
The hot, humid conditions didn't seem to bother anyone. But that's not a surprise, considering last year's disappointments.
The Tigers saw their 53-game region win streak come to an end, as well as their string of seven straight region championships. Now, they're on a mission to get back to the top.
"We feel like we've just got to work hard," said senior linebacker Ashton Calhoun. "We've just got to humble ourselves, do what the coaches tell us. We've got to be very coachable this year. There's a lot of people trying to come our way and try to get at us, but we're going to take the challenge and we're going to win."
Head coach Joe Kegler likes the way his players are approaching practice.
"They bought into the hard work," Kegler said. "They have great attitudes. They've been working hard since we started back working and the kids are anxious to get after it."
No one is more anxious to get after it than quarterback Jawon Pass. He verbally committed to Louisville less than two weeks ago, and to him it's a done deal, and bringing it up now is a distraction he doesn't need. The senior might be the marquee player, but he's doesn't necessarily like all the hoopla that goes with it.
"I'm not really into everybody looking at me," said Pass. "I'm just focused on leading my team best as I can to a state championship. That's all I want."
"He's focused on being a better leader and leading us hopefully to the Georgia Dome," Kegler said. "We have some pretty good running backs, the receivers are pretty good, so I think we have some good things to compliment what he can do as well."