Beulah football finding success this summer

Published 10:30 am Saturday, July 1, 2023

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Beulah hosted Notasulga and Lafayette on Thursday for a combined practice, drills and 7-on-7 competition. 

Unlike some 7-on-7 camps, each team brought their offensive and defensive lineman. The lineman worked on drills on the upper field while the rest of the players worked on Beulah’s game field. 

Each team got to the field at around eight Thursday morning to begin their warmups. After the coaches met and warmups were ended, the teams competed against each other in one on one drills. 

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Defensive backs went up against wideouts in one on one scenarios, and linebackers went up against running backs. 

Each offense for each team faced each defense for roughly 15 minutes before they switched to the next section of the camp. 

After the one on one drills, the teams competed for 20 minutes each against each other’s defense. 

The teams were only able to get through roughly half of the camp before it was cut short. 

On the upper field, one of Beulah’s assistant coaches had a medical emergency that required him to be taken from the field in an ambulance. 

Beulah’s Head Coach, Matt Johnson, confirmed that the assistant coach is doing well and recovering in the hospital at this time. 

The assistant coach suffered a heat related illness that led to him needing to be taken off the field. Johsnon commended the efforts of his players and staff that took action to keep the situation under control. 

“Everybody did what they’re supposed to do in terms of when we have accidents,” Johnson said. 

Johnson said that the team was lucky to have the fire department so close by in a situation like this. 

“They were really timely and really quick,” Johnson said. “He just got too hot, and sometimes those things happen, but you gotta be able to respond the right way. We have a plan in place and they executed it well.” 

The teams were scheduled to compete in 7-on-7 competitions for the rest of the camp before the camp was cut short. 

Johnson was thrilled with the competition that he saw from his team before the end of the camp on Thursday. 

“I thought we did a really good job competing,” Johnson said. “That’s the best that we’ve looked since I’ve been there. I’m just so proud of them, I really am.” 

The obvious improvement from Beulah was with their skill positions. 

Beulah has added a lot of size on the outside. 

Beulah’s wideouts have an ability to go up and get the ball.

 Johnson believes that Beulah’s offense will be able to make more plays downfield this season. 

“Usually when you take shots you’re like, alright this may be a 50/50 ball right here,” Johnson said. “I think the percentages are in our favor this year when we go deep down the field.”

LJ Fitzgerald is one of the reasons that Beulah will do well with the contested catches this season. 

Fitzgerald medaled for high jump in the state last year. 

Another advantage that Beulah has added this offseason is their quarterback. 

Demarion Foreman is currently the starter for Beulah and he excelled on Thursday. 

“He was on today,” Johnson said. “He’s gonna be fun to coach this year. He just showed his arm today, but his legs are just as good as his arm. I’m very excited about him.” 

Johnson noted that he is seeing his team do several things the right way on both sides of the football. 

“We hustled, we just did things the right way,” Johnson said. “We’re able to do things the right way now. You can start seeing it on these kids. We look like football players. We’re bigger, we’re faster, we’re stronger.”

Johnson believes that one of Beulah’s biggest improvements has been in the weight room. 

He said that the competitive nature for Beulah has been present in the weight room as well as on the field.

“It all starts in the weight room,” Johnson said. “We don’t become bigger, we don’t become faster, we don’t become stronger without the weight room.”

Beulah’s strength and conditioning coach, Rusty Arnett, was praised by Johnson for how he has prepared the team in the weight room. 

The coaching staff for Beulah is trying not to jinx themselves going into next season, but they believe that this team could be much different from the past. 

“We’re cautiously optimistic, let’s just put it that way,” Johnson said. “We don’t wanna jinx ourselves because we’ve never played this well preseason. This group is going to be pretty special.” 

Beulah has been going at it since the beginning of June. 

The team will get a week off next week to rest.