The first day of pads for most schools won’t come until Monday, although Saturday was the first day state high school football teams can finally put on shoulder pads.
West Laurens wasted no time.
The Raiders had their own Middle Georgia high school football version of Midnight Madness with a scrimmage at 12:01 Saturday morning.
“The kids were really jacked up,” head coach Stacy Nobles said. “It was a good atmosphere, we had a good group of fans out there.”
And it wasn’t a social event.
“We got after it,” Nobles said. “This was a work session. The kids were tired of going in helmets. It’s always nice when you get out there and start hitting.”
This wasn’t Nobles’ first such late-night workout.
“I did it when I was with Coach (Sam) Barrs over at Bleckley (County),” Nobles said. “It just so happened that the first pad day fell on Saturday.”
Nobles liked what he saw on both sides of the ball.
“We looked really good for the first practice,” he said. “Very efficient offensively -- a few busts here and there, but nothing major -- and on defense, we were really swarming around, flying to the football, some big hits.
“It was electric at the beginning. The kids were screaming and hollering.”
The Raiders are a favorite in GHSA Region 2-AAAA, and open the season on Aug. 21 at home against Thomasville.