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Quality offseason work carries over into fall practice for DHS

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  • Feature Story
  • By:
  • George Becnel
  • Posted:
  • August 10, 2018 - 10:39am

Destrehan senior quarterback J.R. Blood rifles a pass during a Wildcats practice session earlier this week in preparation for the upcoming 2018 season.

Quality work over the spring and summer has carried over to the start of fall practice for the Destrehan Wildcats.

“The kids come out here and work hard and do everything we ask. It’s a good group of players that if we stick together, we have a chance to win a few games,” Destrehan coach Stephen Robicheaux said earlier this week.

Destrehan has worked in shells for three days before donning full gear on Thursday. Robicheaux said he has liked what he has seen from his Wildcats.

“I think this team is senior-laden. They are guys that have been around. They’ve seen disappointment and they’ve seen success,” the Destrehan coach said. “They have a business-like work ethic. They come out and work hard every day.

“It’s the kind of group you are looking forward to. You have the senior quarterback and you have a lot of weapons around him.”

The senior quarterback is J.R. Blood, who has been a starter since his sophomore year. He will have a plethora of high-quality options to go to this season.

“It’s his senior year and he understands that he doesn’t have to do it all and that he has a lot of great weapons around him. When you can hand the ball off to John Emery, a Georgia commit, and then Kyle Edwards and Ed’Juan Green, you have three good running backs back there. Of course, you have Quinton Torbor, who is a commitment to Mississippi State, and Quincy Brown, who Alabama has already offered as a junior. We have guys in the slot that can really play,” Robicheaux said.

Up front, the Wildcats will not be as big as in past years.

“I really like the guys,” the Destrehan coach said. “They are scrappy and intense, and I think they will get it done.”

The strength of the Wildcats defense will be the front seven.

“I think we have some guys that can really play,” Robicheaux said. “We have Dontrell Smith at one corner who will be a D-I player. Albert Owusu is another guy that is getting a lot of looks. Champ Craven is a guy that started as a sophomore for us but blew his knee out last year and didn’t play. He’s at free safety. Denzel Riley is another kid that is going to sign. Trent Smith has done a tremendous job. At linebacker, we have Alex Huszar, who is committed to Southeastern. Dylan Whitted is inexperienced and is at the other linebacker. Up front, we have some guys that didn’t get a lot of experience but can play.

“I think it’s a good combination of good scheme that will allow us to move around because we are not as big as we’ve been in the past, but it allows us to use our speed and I think that will be a plus for us.”

The Wildcats will host Salmen in a scrimmage scheduled for 5:30 p.m. August 17.

“We will start slowly and get more to a scrimmage-type format (in practice) and trying to start getting into that game-type situation but we will not focus a whole lot on Salmen, but we will do what we do but start getting to that format of playing game-type situations,” Robicheaux said.

George Becnel | .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

George Becnel is an award-winning journalist and has been a sports writer and editor for more than 30 years.