When Dougherty High School head football coach Jesse Hicks accepted the Trojan job last June, Hicks knew there was a lot of work in front of him. After last season's 2-8 regular season- there's still a lot of work to be done.
However, Hicks is making sure this offseason- his Trojans can lift any amount of weight.
"It's not how heavy the load, it's how you carry it," Hicks said.
Every weekday during the summer- yelling, clapping, weights slamming and other tell-tale signs of work being accomplished can be heard from outside the Dougherty High School field house.
"This is chill time for most high school kids...this is my break I get two months off...but when it comes to football the more you put in, the more you're going to get out," Hicks said. "You don't put any work in during the summer you're not going to be very good in the fall...you don't win football games in August."
The Trojans coming off a 2-8 year didn't do much winning during any month finishing the season with a 20 point loss to the Monroe Tornadoes. Second-year coach Hicks had a plan for his team and he had his players back to work that following Monday.
"Our past coach we worked but we didn't work this hard. We didn't have that look in our eyes. We just...we weren't hungry like we (are) now," Trojan offensive lineman Cameron Williams said.
"What we want to do isâ|we want to create the atmosphere that we've worked you so hard during the summer months and the offseason that on Friday night's- its just easy," Hicks added
Hicks has made it easy for football players before. Previously coaching AA Baldwin High School in to a successful program with the same formula, by combining elements of body, mind and spirit.
"He doesn't stress football...he wants us to be better men in life. It's not about football with him...so us winning games...it is important to him but he's more about us being men," Trojan skill player Amaud Ross said.
"The one thing that you got every day of your life is you control your own attitude...you might not be able to control the weather...you can't control your parents or your environment a lot of times," Hicks said. "The big thing you can control is your attitude towards what you do."
Hicks is lifting the attitudes off his 30+ Trojan players this summer in hopes of lifting the team's win total this upcoming season.
"People over here on the eastside of Albany expect to win. What we've got to do as a staff, as a football program, as a school and as a community. We've got to start buying in with each other," Hicks said.