Harlan played Bell in passing scrimmage

Published 12:40 am Thursday, July 19, 2018

Tuesday’s passing scrimmage between Bell County and Harlan wasn’t about who could outscore the other. It was merely a chance for both teams to work on their passing game — an aspect of the offense that neither team utilized much last season.

For Harlan, the scrimmage was a chance for coach John Luttrell to see how his team handled adversity.

“We started out slow. Yesterday was our first day, and we did all of our conditioning test. Their legs were a little weary, but that’s one thing that I wanted to see — how they faced that adversity,” said Luttrell. “We didn’t do a very good job of it early, but I thought later on we kind of got in the flow and did a little better.

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“We’ve still got a lot of improvement. There are still some things we did well, but it’s just so early. There’s still a lot of improvement to do.”

A team that relied solely on the rushing attack last year — averaging 53 yards passing per game, the scrimmage was a chance for the quarterbacks to get their reads down and the defense to practice coverages.

“It’s like I told our guys last week…you might have a guy that looks like a superstar in a helmet and T-shirt. The bottom line is football is a contact sport,” said Luttrell. “You might have a guy who doesn’t look as good in helmets and T-shirts, but come Aug. 1 when the pads come on, he moves way to the top because he gets after it and knows how to hit. That’s just the sport that we’re in.

“Seven-on-seven gives you a little bit of a look on some things, (but) you’ve got to have 11 out there that like to run around and hit. But, we got some good work. It’s always good to work with coach Hilton. We got a lot of young kids some work, and so did he. That helps a lot to because you want those guys to get reps.”

Harlan opens the 2018 season Aug. 17 on the road against Floyd Central. Bell County opens the year on Aug. 17 at Middlesboro.