Dragons open minicamp
After graduating more than a dozen seniors from the 2020 rosters, the Cameron High School Dragon Football Team’s minicamp and offseason strength and conditioning program will play a major factor in their success this season.
The Dragons return from an 8-4 2020 season, and have a long way to go in order to return to form in 2021, but Cameron coach Jeff Wallace likes what he has seen after just a few days of camp.
“They’re doing everything we’re asking them to do. They’re busting it in the weight room in the morning, getting hydrated and something to eat, then coming back in the afternoons for our meetings and practices,” Wallace said. “We’re at about 71 (players) grades nine through 12. I could not be happier about what I’m getting. They’re doing a great job at following the blueprint for success we’ve had the past two years.”
The Dragons most significant losses this offseason came on the offensive side of the ball. With former starting quarterback Ty Campbell now playing for Morningside College, starting receivers Ty and Bryson Speer moving to Hamilton last spring and four of the five starting linemen graduating, the Dragons seem in a rebuilding year but junior receiver/linebacker Benton Barton does not believe that is the case. Sophomore quarterback Alec Leazenby showed significant growth since playing third-string his freshman year, working with the starters for most of team drills Monday and finding receivers in the end zone on more than a few occasions. Senior center Cole Henderson, who’s already gained more than 20 pounds in preparation for the season, will provide stability to the line, and senior Caleb Ricks will see significantly more action at guard or tackle following a breakout 2020 campaign.
“It’s going to be a lot better than what everybody thinks. I think we can be just as good as we were last year,” Barton said. “Everybody is showing up to weights and getting 1 percent better every day. I think we can be a good football team.”
For Henderson, he believes the key moving forward is to show the younger players, not tell them, how to be leaders.
“We have to be a role model and set an example. Sometimes, the best leaders show by example instead of using their voice. That’s how I’m going to leave my mark - somebody who set the example,” he said.
The Dragons will participate in a team contact camp this weekend in Higginsville, then host area schools for weekly 7-on-7 drills each Tuesday for the next three weeks.