New norm for Jones, Blue Devils

Cordova coach hopes to be with team in summer

By JOHNATHAN BENTLEY, Eagle Sports Editor
Posted 4/7/20

The Cordova Blue Devils would typically be gearing up for spring practice later this month.

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New norm for Jones, Blue Devils

Cordova coach hopes to be with team in summer

Posted

The Cordova Blue Devils would typically be gearing up for spring practice later this month.

Instead, with Alabama under a shelter-in-place order due to the coronavirus pandemic, coaches are having to get creative when it comes to staff meetings and coordinating workouts and conditioning with players.

Cordova coach Justin Jones is looking to keep his football team motivated during Governor Kay Ivey’s order that went into effect last week. Jones is using the team’s Twitter account (@FootballCordova) to maintain a positive outlook.

“We have a different player every day saying something positive to their teammates,” said Jones, who has more than 90 players from grades 9-12. “That’s one of the ways we are dealing with it.”

In a normal spring, the Blue Devils would wrap up practice in mid-May. Now, Jones is just hoping to get back with his team in the summer.

“I’ve been at places before where spring (practice) was cut short because of baseball. You may not get 10 days. You may only get six or seven,” Jones said. “It’s difficult not having a spring, but the pressure will be on if we don’t get to have the summer. We do a lot of inventory with the kids in the summer. If we don’t get to do the work we do in the summer, it may be a little different through your first three or four games. Hopefully, we will be able to get in our routine with the kids. We need to install all we need to before fall.”

As the days at home pile up, Jones wants his players to stay active.

“Every week we’ve been sending them things on HUDL or messaging them film. The great thing about HUDL is there is accountability to it. It shows how much you’ve been on it. What we’ve done is set the workouts and if you have a gym or your granddaddy has a weight bench in his garage — just do what you can. We send them three workouts and three conditionings a week. We want them to do something. What we’re trying to do is set up something where there is still accountability. It will help us as coaches and help the kids.”

Despite spring sports coming to a halt in March and the shelter-in-place order in effect until the end of the month, Jones is keeping a positive outlook on the football season.

“I really feel like the first gathering in the US is going to be Friday night lights,” he said.

Cordova is making the move to Class 5A in 2020. The season is scheduled to start Aug. 21 at rival Dora.