QUAPAW — Quapaw takes the first step in what is hoped to be a turnaround in its football fortunes when pre-season workouts begin Monday, Aug. 7.
The Wildcats, coming off an 0-9 showing in 2016, have a new coach in Chris Cawyer.
Cawyer, who guided Picher-Cardin to a Class A state championship in 1984, succeeds Rick Couch.
This will be the first time Cawyer has been a head coach since 1989, when he guided Afton to a 7-4 record and a trip to the Class A playoffs.
Cawyer was the Gorillas’ head coach for three seasons then spent five at Dewey.
This is a “return engagement” for Cawyer at Quapaw: he assisted Brad Homer for three seasons earlier in the decade.
He’s also served two stints as an assistant at Commerce and has been at Fairland the previous two.
The Wildcats will practice at 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday then at 6 p.m. Thursday.
They will practice at 5 p.m. on Aug. 11; take the weekend off then go at 3 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 14, which also is the first day of classes for the Quapaw School District.
“We had a good summer for weightlifting,” Cawyer said. “Hopefully we can get everyone on board and win a game.”
The Wildcats are looking for their first winning season since 2009 and their first playoff appearance since 2003.
Wyandotte will go with its normal afternoon practice routine, lifting then work out for about 2 hours.
“I hate changing the times around on the kids and parents, plus we will start having in-service stuff,” head coach Brad Homer said. “That is where we are at when school starts anyway.”
He said he’s planning a brief practice in the morning on Saturday, Aug. 12.
“Before school starts (Thursday, Aug. 17), we should be able to get in seven or eight practices in,” Homer said.
The Bears travel to Checotah on Friday, Aug. 18 for their first scrimmage.
He’s trying to flip the location of a Thursday, Aug. 24 scrimmage against Tahlequah Sequoyah, moving it to Tahlequah.
“Our first two games are at home so we are trying to stay off it as much as possible,” Homer said of the turf at Brewster Field.
The Bears were 9-2 a year ago, reaching the second round of the Class 2A playoffs where they suffered a 21-19 heartbreaker at Antlers.
“We feel good, but the big question mark right now obviously is up front,” Homer said.
That’s where graduation and off-season injuries have taken a toll.
The Owls will practice from 8 to 11 a.m. Monday and Tuesday then from 4 to 7 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday, according to head coach Kent Marshall.
The Friday, Aug. 11 practice will be from 2:30 to 5:30 p.m. and then from 8 to 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 12.
The Owls will hold workouts from 4 to 7 p.m. Aug. 14-15 then pick up the normal afternoon practice schedule on the first day of classes, Wednesday, Aug. 16.
Fairland will have only one scrimmage, Friday, Aug. 18 at Chouteau.
The Owls open the regular season on Thursday, Aug. 24 with a Zero Week game at Colcord.
Practice plans at Commerce are for workouts at 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. the first week then at 3 p.m. on Aug. 14-16 because of professional development requirements.
When school starts on Thursday, Aug. 17, the Tigers will begin their regular practice routine.
CHS travels to Ketchum for a scrimmage on Friday, Aug. 18 then opens the season
Friday, Aug. 25 with a Zero Week game at Sarcoxie, Missouri.
The Eagles will practice from 10 a.m. to moon Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday then from 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday and Friday.
They travel to Westville for a scrimmage that includes Sallisaw Central on Aug. 18.
They will not scrimmage the following week.
Th3e Eagles' season opener will be Friday, Sept. 1 at Colcord.