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Douglas football team gears up for 2014 season

With a full year under his belt as the head coach for the Stoneman Douglas High School varsity football program, Willis May not only looks to improve upon last season's 5-5 record, but he genuinely believes his Eagles have a shot at making it to district title territory.

But much work needs to be done over the coming weeks and months in order to afford the program such an opportunity.

Firstly, May needs a roster consisting of strong, knowledgeable and dedicated players, and secondly, he needs his team to build the physical tools in which to execute his plans.

This is why the Second Annual Douglas Football Team Golf Outing proceeds will play a significant role in May's vision of a successful 2014 season.

"The funds from the golf outing are a huge part of our program's success and needs," said May, about the golf affair that is scheduled for Aug. 23rd at the Coral Springs Country Club.

And according to May, last year's funds have actually had a helpful impact on the Douglas football program's summer practices thus far. From a 5-man sled to sideline tarp to various tackling equipment, May is just as optimistic this year, if not more than last year, that the golf outing funds will continue to offer his program a myriad of benefits.

"We got new uniforms from last year's (golf) funds, a run-through tunnel and we'd like to get some more stuff for the field," said May, who is also grateful for the funds contributing toward his team's pre-game meals.

But May's team rosters have not been finalized just yet. The hopeful players have been enduring some intense summer practices, both outside casually for conditioning as well as in the weight room for strength training purposes.

As of now, May will probably dress about 65 players to his varsity roster, in which they are generally juniors and seniors, while he said he plans to have approximately 40 underclass men assigned to the JV squad that is to be headed up by Harry Dickens.

And leading the way for the varsity players, according to May's opinion of him giving great effort every day and staying strong, is junior/center Joe Durante, whose 2014 optimism is sure to be contagious.

"I'm trying to help re-build our program here and we're making a new era," said Durante, as he wiped away his forehead sweat during a rigorous outdoor workout. "I just want to help all of us, and get our program where it could and should be."

And Durante's days of sweaty summer sessions are far from over, as May is sporadically having some of his players participate in various statewide 7-on-7 tourneys. May's efforts, along with those from his coaching staff and players, will hopefully lead to fruition.

"I'd like to improve from last year and contend for a title," added May, whose resume includes coaching high school football for more than two decades. "Right now, my goal is to win a district championship, in which we also hope to generate more enthusiasm and school spirit over all."

For more info on the golf outing, visit msdfootball.com.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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