Big Rapids, Reed City taking passing camps seriously

Cardinals, Coyotes face four opponents at practice

Reed City coach Scott Shankel (center) talks with his players after Thursday's passing camp.

Reed City coach Scott Shankel (center) talks with his players after Thursday's passing camp.

Pioneer photo/John Raffel

BIG RAPIDS – It’s not quite September or October but the football was definitely in the air on Thursday at Big Rapids’ grass football practice field.

Reed City and host Big Rapids were among the six teams playing four opponents each in 7-on-7 passing scrimmages.

Dead week will be July 4-9 before the players get active again. Coach Scott Shankel’s Reed City players mixed it up with Ludington, Tri County, Kent City and Belding.

“This was our third one,” Shankel said. “We had a tournament style one on the 24th which went very well. We were also at Mount Pleasant. Our kids have had a good summer. In a program of 50 to 60 kids, we’re getting about 40 to 45 every night.”

Reed City comes back on July 10 with its tire lifting/conditioning at the practice field. Later in the week, there will be a minicamp and additional 7-on-7 scrimmages.

Shankel said he can tell during the fall that summer activity pays off big time. “It’s important for the kids to buy into it and work hard. It goes together hand to hand,” he said

Xavier Allen and Brayden Bloom are the returning quarterbacks from last season. “I had a younger kid tonight who’s a sophomore,” Shankel said.

Big Rapids played Belding, Kent City, Ludington and Tri County. BR Coach Mike Selzer also had his team host a passing camp at Cardinal Stadium on Tuesday. The games were switched to the grass practice field to accommodate more schools on Thursday.