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Just another day at the Bank… Cyclones amp up practices after recent fall sports announcement

BY IVAN SANDERS
STAR SPORTS EDITOR
ivan.sanders@elizabethton.com
With many students getting in their final sleep-in days before school starts, the defending Class 4A State Champion Elizabethton Cyclones are up at the break of dawn with their lunch pails and water bottles in tow as they head out for another morning of hard, sweaty work at Citizens Bank Stadium.
Working out in helmets, shorts, and t-shirts the Cyclones spent this day working on kicking offs, building return wedges, and extra point blocking as the season now appears heading for a regular-season start date in approximately three weeks.
That can change as with everything else in 2020 on the flip of a switch but now the Cyclones and other local teams have something to work toward with a change in enthusiasm and a sense of urgency.
The message being preached at practice was about unity, sticking together as a team, and handling adversity in the right way while lifting your fellow teammate when one sees them fall.
It didn’t take long to see what the extended weightlifting and conditioning has done for the Cyclones as many players displayed increased size and speed from their time working out during the COVID-19 setback.
The team was scheduled to receive their pads on Friday morning as contact can resume once again next week with the Governor’s executive order #55.
While the jury is still out as many other local health departments and school administrators have throughout the state have requested that prep football be suspended during the increase in COVID-19, the Cyclones are preparing as if that won’t occur as they are hungry to get back on the turf for another run at a state championship.
For coaches, it will be like cramming for a college exam final as there are still a lot of kinks to work out and final depth charts to work out for each position.
At this point, its about making sure each player has an opportunity to get in some contact during practice to ready their bodies for a very physical upcoming 2020 season.