This coming season, the Jones High football team might want to adopt a slogan.
That has a nice ring to it. Because given the talent that third-year coach Kenard Lang has assembled, there won't be room for any excuses at the end of this run.
And that's exactly how the 35-year-old former NFL defensive end wants it.
"To be honest, I'm really expecting us to have a real good year," Lang said. "Our goal every year is to win state, of course, but I think we really can do well in the playoffs this year."
With the college prospects he has up and down the roster, he certainly should be excited. The talent is there, but in order for it to remain on the field, Lang expects one thing.
"Discipline. If you don't listen I'll tell you to leave," Lang said. "The biggest thing in football that you need to have to win is discipline, and if you can't listen to me I don't need you out here."
And they should listen, given the accolades that come along with the man standing in front of them. The former Evans High player came back to his roots after his playing career ended. He was an All-American at Miami and played 309 games over 10 years with the Washington Redskins, Cleveland Browns and Denver Broncos in the NFL.
"They pay attention and I think they realize how fortunate they are," Lang said of being able to share his experiences to help his players learn. "Also, a lot times some of my friends who I played with come back and talk to the kids and stuff like that and that's a big plus."
Lang says he probably should have made some changes last year when he had Raysean Brown and Stacey Robinson. Those two are gone now, but Jones trudges forward. So when you see the Tigers in the spread offense next season, don't think it's a gimmick. Lang wants to open the field for these guys, most of whom can flat-out fly.
The fastest and, arguably, best athlete on the team is Clim Robbins, a 5-foot-9, 165-pound cornerback/receiver who ran his fastest 40-yard dash Sunday at the National Underclassmen Combine at Jones. Robbins is ranked No. 35 in the Sentinel's 2011 Central Florida Super60.
"I think I did really good out here," said Robbins, who has offers from Iowa State and Mississippi State so far. "I dropped my 40 time from 4.4 to 4.34. And in the 1-on-1s, I shut them down out there today. I only had one catch on me."
Those who might argue the best athlete part are his teammates. Players like QB Angelo Warner (No. 32 in the Super60 and also a star on the hoops team).
Warner split time with Brown last year, but this coming season the job will be all his. Last year Warner passed for 1,668 yards and 14 TDs. He threw only four interceptions and was 93-of-155 for a 60-percent completion rate.
RB Steven Michel (4.58 40), WR Kermit Whitfield (2012 explosive return man), DE Kenny Judson (co-defenisve end MVP Sunday), TE Lexx Edwards, DB Cameron Montgomery, DE Jamal Massey (Apopka transfer with brother Chad), LB Tafari Huggins (4.7 40), RB Deante Burton and DE Jusme Guerinand. Lang also likes his offensive line, anchored by Duaron Williams, a solid 2012 tackle, and senior to be OG Joshua "Bubba" Bembery (2012).
"I was kinda shady at first," Judson (6-2, 187) said of the 1-on-1 drills Sunday. "A lot of offensive linemen, when they see me they think they can dominate me, but then they see the speed and they gotta second-guess themselves."
There might be a lot of second-guessing next season, as teams realize they can't just kick around the Jones Tigers any more.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun