Johnson, Bulldogs ready for new season

Published 5:55 pm Friday, August 6, 2010

It was back in February when things started to become a little hectic for Robert Johnson.

He had just been named the new athletic director and head football coach by Pike County High School, leaving Carroll High School.

Since the day he was hired, Johnson has been on the move, both literally and figuratively.

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Everyday, he makes the 25-minute drive from his home in Ozark to the high school.

Once he arrives, he is continues to work on moving his new team and athletic program, which is going through its fourth head football coach and athletic director, in the right direction.

But now, after almost six months on the job, Johnson gets to do what he was brought to the high school for – prepare to win football games.

With only a few more weeks before the Bulldogs take the field, the coach said things are moving along as planned.

“Things are going very well,” Johnson said. “The kids have been working hard.

“We have had a few minor injuries here and there, but we are still on the right kind of pace.

“We are going full steam ahead into the season,” the coach added.

Another aspect that has kept the team moving forward is the number of players who have come out to be a part of the team.

While there may have been some controversy over the hiring of Johnson, there are currently 38 PCHS students in pads, which is just one less than there were a year ago with then new head coach, Eddie Stephenson.

What’s even more reassuring for Johnson is the mentality the team has had in training camp, so far.

“The kids have been responding well to everything,” the coach said.

“They have had the right mind set. We are taking it one day at a time, one drill, one play at a time but so far they have all worked extremely hard.”

And as far as the X’s and O’s of the game, the coach likes where his team is as well.

“The kids are very familiar with what’s going on offensively and defensively. They are making adjustments and when you see that, they know what’s going on,” he said.

Even though Johnson said the past few months have been very tiring, working with his ‘new family’ has made it all worthwhile, as is the knowledge that the new season is just around the corner.

“Absolutely ready for the season to start,” he said with a laugh. “All the coaches and the players don’t go through all this practice for nothing, they don’t practice in all the heat for no reason.

“Once that first regular season game begins, it will all have been worth it. And that’s what we are working towards – and I think we are all waiting for that moment,” the coach added.