July 2, 2013 | Vol. 94, No. 154

Midgets take to the gridiron

HURLEY — Football practice doesn't start for a month, but the Hurley Midgets had 40 high school players on the gridiron Monday for a Blugold Football Camp.

Jason Juno/Daily Globe
Hurley’s Jordan Kolpin blocks while Tyler Jaeger plays the pulling guard during a drill Monday at the Hurley K-12 School.

The UW-Eau Claire coaching staff came to Hurley to conduct the camp for the second year in a row.

“I knew we were going to have a good number of kids this year coming out for fall ball. To get 40 here today feels like the program is really going and continuing in the right direction,” Hurley coach Scott Erickson said. “Very happy. A lot of schools are struggling for numbers right now, but that doesn't seem to be the case here.”

The season starts on Aug. 23 with a home game against Florence. The Midgets host Ironwood on Aug. 30.

The Hurley kids have been preparing for the season for some time, be it in the weight room, in strong man competitions or this camp.

“Our kids have put in a lot of time in the offseason and the summer,” Erickson said. “Now they get a chance to put some of that to work right now. I think a lot of them are in new bodies from where they were last year. I think they're feeling out what they can do and what's possible.”

The Eau Claire coaches bring a different perspective.

“Everything is really technical. Footwork, hand position, those things,” Erickson said. “The fact those guys get to practice it at a pretty good rate of speed, that's only going to help us in the fall.”