PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) – The Arnold football team got out on the field bright and early Monday morning for the first day of fall practice.
The Marlins all very excited to kick the season off and get right to work on their goals for the year.
“Wouldn’t want to be anywhere else but right here. First day of football practice is always a good day, probably the best day of my life if I’m being honest with you,” Arnold head coach Shawn Campbell said.
Arnold didn’t have the easiest of seasons last year, their head coach resigned three games into it and they had to forfeit their last few games due to COVID-19 issues.
They finished the season with a 2-5 record.
This season they have more obstacles to face, since they are an extremely young team and lost players to graduation and transferring, but Campbell said that’s not what defines them.
“They are a tight knit bunch, they’re very close. We don’t have a bunch of them but what we do have, they work hard. They come and work hard every day. I think those two characteristics are gonna make them successful, their comradery and how tight they are and their work ethic,” Campbell said.
For the first day of practice, the Marlins all sporting the hashtag “Mindset” on the back of their shirts and the players said that mindset is one that’s been show in hundreds of sports movies over the years.
“We’re really gonna be known as the underdogs this season because everybody, we had a lot of people leave, and everybody is doubting us and we’re ready to turn some heads,” Arnold football player Jordan White said.
With a lot of young players on the team, it means guys stepping up into different roles and even different positions.
Marlins quarterback Seth Hernandez hasn’t played in the position since his freshman year, but is up for the challenge.
Some of their players are even playing both offense and defense this year.
“It means we get tired in the game, so we got to work harder in practice to get our endurance level up. Again a lot of people left, so we don’t have many guys to play those positions so we have to go both ways and it gets tiring,” Arnold football player Sam Mudge said.
That’s why this team is giving it their all these next few weeks. They might be young, but they have a lot of heart and are hungry to change their record to a winning on in 2021.
“These younger kids are really starting to realize, ‘it’s game time, I’m not on JV anymore, I need to start getting my head into it and really pushing.’ Nobody believes in us but we really have some dawgs that want to be seen and we’re gonna show them we’re about business,” White said.
Arnold kicks off their season against Bay on August 27.