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Beulah produces 9 college FB players
By Jarann Johnson
Most high school football programs in the country aren’t strong enough to send multiple athletes to the college level. The few programs known for helping multiple kids reach the college level are in highly populated areas, but Beulah’s 2016 senior class put their small school on the map for football talent.
The 2016 senior class showed off their skill with nine college commitments on National Signing Day. Head Coach Jim Dooley thinks there could have been more players in this senior class, but that a few are turning to other interests after high school.
Dooley, who arrived in the fall 2012, said this class’s biggest strength was their commitment to training in the weight room. The Beulah weight room is an old school weight room, basically a storage area in the Beulah High School gym.
There are no windows down there, just a few weight racks, machines, and a wall of honor. The wall list the names of students who have accomplished certain lifting goals.
All of the seniors who will be playing college football in the fall have their name somewhere on the wall. Dooley isn’t shy about the importance of the weight room to his program and successful football players.
“Probably the biggest thing is whatever we were selling, they bought. The main thing is the weight room, it’s kind of the No. 1 transformation here. These guys came in and the first time they came in for high school football they are being told, ‘You need to be in the weight room. You need to do these workouts, you need to do it year around,’ ” Dooley said.
Dooley comically remarked most of the 2016 seniors didn’t know any better than to listen to him. Dooley said in the past he’s had teams with students who were naturally athletic, but that this group was more so gifted by the desire to constantly work hard and improve.
Dooley said during the 2012 season, as freshman, the class had some talent but didn’t have many players who looked like they could simply rise and run from bed to become great players. Now as seniors Dooley said he’s not surprised by the players’ ability and skill.
“I think when you look at that class, when they came in as freshman, you could pin-point a few kids – count maybe 2-3 and say, ‘OK they might go on and play after high school.’ Looking at it now I’m not really surprised, because they are all pretty good players, but when they were freshman there is no way I would say that,” Dooley said.
Dooley recalled some of the happiness players exposed as freshman when they passed the 120-pound barrier. A lot of the players have grown since the fall of 2012 -- mentally, physically, and vertically -- and now they can call themselves college-athletes.