NORTH LITTLE ROCK FOOTBALL |
Cats wrap up at Camp Robinson
By Bruce Guthrie
If you want to talk to North Little Rock football coach Brad Bolding, or any other Charging Wildcat assistant football coach, it might take some time to get them on the phone.
"We are busy," Bolding said. "Meetings, getting schedules together, cleaning equipment. It’s an ongoing process."
Preseason practice begins next Monday. Prep work started this past Monday after the team’s final camp at North Little Rock’s Camp Robinson where they competed with Stuttgart and Pine Bluff as well as getting some military teamwork exercises.
After a summer filled with team camps, individual work and some national attention including Kavon Alexander’s participation in the Nike Opening, Bolding and his staff appear ready for some good old-fashioned football.
While the Charging Wildcats are considered the state’s top team in any classification, don’t expect Bolding to take what he hears from football pundits and allow his team to rest on rankings.
In fact, expect the 7th-year coach to do just the opposite.
"We are committed to how we play," Bolding said. "The most important thing is to do what we have been coached to do."
The 2013 schedule mirrors 2012, but you won’t bait Bolding into talking about opponents. Not even week one’s Lake Hamilton.
"Our players know we play Lake Hamilton," Bolding said, "but we are focused on what we do."
That philosophy is to deflect hype brought on by the past success of the program, and the projections of where the Charging Wildcats fall in the state’s pecking order.
Rivals.com listed North Little Rock as ranked 87th in their top 100 poll that surfaced this week.
"That’s all fine and good," Bolding said. "It’s great publicity for our school on a national level, but it’s more about how we finish."
Finishing plays, finishing games, and individual effort and accountability is what Bolding and his staff have preached for years, and the message continues going into fall workouts.
The Auburn Tigers offered Charging Wildcat receiver K.J. Hill over the weekend. Hill, a 6-0, 185-pounder, runs a 4.5 in the 40-yard dash and enjoyed a very productive sophomore campaign hauling in more than 800 receiving yards and rushing for 200-plus yards as well.
Bolding said Hill is very early in the recruiting process and would not offer a decision adding, "He will probably get a lot more offers."
Another player that North Little Rock will most certainly watch walk onto the major college football stage is Kavon Alexander. The cornerback attended the Nike Opening over the summer after setting records in the SPARQ competition in Dallas earlier in the year.