CRESTVIEW — Staying healthy is Crestview High School football Coach Tim Hatten’s biggest concern when the Bulldogs host Pace in the 2014 Kickoff Classic on Friday.
“It’s just another opportunity to get kids beat up — that’s my standpoint,” Hatten said. “But when you play, you play to win. You are under the lights and you are competing.
“You don’t want to go about it halfway, and we won’t.”
The game will follow the normal preseason format that will have freshman teams play the first quarter, junior varsities in the second quarter and varsities in the second half.
“I don’t know what he’s (Patriot coach Mickey Lindsey) going to do and I could care less,” Hatten said. “I’m probably going to play my ones (starters) and twos in the (second) half, and mostly twos if I can get away with it, to keep my ones healthy.
“With depth being such a critical issue for us, I’m not sure if that’s worth rolling the dice and take chance a playing a kid (that’s not 100 percent). We’ve got kids that are beat up. If they are beat up they are not going to dress out because the game is not that important.”
Hatten described the game as “a glorified fundraiser” that makes a little money for everyone and is more for the fans. If the Bulldog football program had enough money in the bank, Hatten said they wouldn’t play the preseason game.
That doesn’t mean Hatten can’t find some value in the warm-up game.
“I think it helps to organize the kicking game and to line them up and get them out there,” he said. “Getting people in and out (on special teams) — that part of it may be important.
“Running our hurry up, up tempo game and two-minute offense, getting our different packages in on offense — that will help us a little bit. Having officials out there, that will help us a little bit.”
WANT TO GO?
WHAT: Kickoff Classic, Pace at Crestview
WHEN: 7 p.m. Friday
WHERE: Crestview High School, Jack Foster Stadium