There’s no Injured Reserve for football coaches.
West St. John coach Brandon Walters was hobbling on the football field with a single crutch and garnering a brace on his knee as his Rams went through their first day of spring practice Monday afternoon.
“I’ve been fussed at it with everybody. I try to take my time and get off it a little bit and get my foot up but I don’t like my guys looking at me and saying, ‘look at Coach chillin’ and we’re over here working,’” Walters said.
Walters is recovering from surgery to repair the anterior cruciate ligament of his knee.
“They took a piece of my quad muscle and built my ACL. I didn’t have an ACL at all,” Walters explained. “It’s an old basketball injury that I kind of put off too long so I have to make sure we get it straight ahead of the season.”
The West St. John coach may be down, but he’s certainly not out.
“It’s good to be back. It’s good to be back smelling the turf and being around the guys and just getting back to it. The Louisiana heat has been holding off just waiting for us to start practicing and its back,” said Walters.
As normal, the first few days of spring practice are about the basics.
“We are just trying to get the cobwebs off and make sure our guys remember some of the things we were doing in the fall and make sure we can teach them a few new things to get ready for the upcoming season and preparation for summer work and stuff like that,” Walters said.
The Rams were in shells on Monday and will be again on Tuesday before putting on full gear for the first time on Wednesday.
“We don’t want to bang too much. We don’t have a lot of numbers so we want to make sure we do a lot of work from the neck up and do a lot more teaching than banging on each other. We know our guys can hit so we just want to be in the right position and think fast,” Walters said.
The numbers were pretty respectable Monday by West St. John standards with close to 40 players taking part in practice for the Class 1A school.
“We have some new faces. We have a few more guys that came out that’s been in the school. I wish we had them in the fall, but hey, we will take it how we get it,” said Walters.
The Rams will work daily this week through Saturday with a team scrimmage. West St. John will be back at it the following week on Monday, Wednesday and Thursday before the Rams host KIPP-Booker T. Washington in the Spring Game set for 5 p.m. May 17 in Edgard.
Walters plans to hang around.
“I can’t miss. I can’t stay away from it. I go and sit and watch a little bit but I love it and I have to be out here amongst my guys. It’s only 10 days. I can handle it,” the West St. John coach said.