Written by Coach Josh Shaw on Wednesday, 16 August 2017.

 The 2017 Cherokee Warriors will make their debut this coming Friday night, at Tommy Baker Field.  We are beyond excited to begin the 2017 season.  There's just something about Friday nights in the fall that seems to excite the whole community.  Last season was magical in many ways, but last season is in the past.  Now, we leave the triumphs and heartaches experienced in 2016 behind.  It's time to move forward with a new team, new faces, and a new focus for 2017.

As we always do, we spent the offseason constantly evaluating the positives and negatives of our program.  What did we like from last year and want to continue?  What were some areas in which we were weak and need improvement?  What can we learn from other successful programs?  These are all items we spent a significant amount of time on from January through July.

Summer workouts were intense and physically and mentally draining.  We busted our tails in the weight room and experienced tremendous growth on and off the field.  We shared blood, sweat, and even tears with each other this summer.  We knew we had some major holes that needed to be filled from last year's team, and hard work and cohesiveness were our focus.  In the end, it was one of the most fun and rewarding summers we've had since I've been at Cherokee.

Over the summer, the following words/themes kept coming to our minds, as we went through the summer schedule of workouts and contact camps.  Those themes were the following:

1.  Brotherhood

2.  Together

3.  Believe

Out of 99 players on our Varsity team this year, only four are returning starters.   Therefore, we knew we had our work cut out for us.  We wanted to establish a "brotherhood" of trust with each other.  We wanted our team to understand that life is not meant to be lived alone; going through the peaks and valleys of life "together" is what life is really all about.  Then, we wanted to establish belief in our program.  We want to teach our guys that when you "believe" in something, you will be willing to sacrifice whatever it takes to achieve what you want to accomplish.  We expressed the need to believe in each other, believe in the process it takes to grow and mature however tough that may be, and believe that you serve a significant purpose in life, regardless of the role you play on this team.  We firmly believe these words/themes are going to be what sustains us this year, as we prepare our guys for their future.

This week we welcome an extremely talented team to Tommy Baker Field, the North Cobb Warriors.  The North Cobb Warriors, poised to have a great year, return several starters on offense and defense.   We are excited and expecting to see improvement from the scrimmage last Friday night, but this won't be an easy task.  We have our work cut out for us this week, but as always, we love and welcome the challenges life may throw our way.

As the Head Football Coach of this program, I am looking forward to seeing how our team responds to all the highs and lows that a new season may bring.  In the end, no matter what may come our way, we will be better players, better men, and better citizens of our community.

Be there early and be LOUD Friday night!  We thank you for your support and we can't wait to get this season started!

About the Author

Coach Josh Shaw

Coach Josh Shaw

Josh Shaw is the Head Coach of the Cherokee High School Warriors Football Team.