Friday nights in the fall at Augusta Prep might soon become a little more active.
Augusta Prep athletics director Tom Holodak confirmed that the school is in the planning stages of possibly adding a football program.
"I honestly feel that maybe five years from now this is going to happen," he said.
Rumors have regularly emerged over the years that the Martinez private school will one day field a football team, but a recent move by the Georgia Independent Schools Association cleared one of the main obstacles that Augusta Prep faced.
Holodak said the GISA has decided to create a spring season for boys soccer. That would allow the Augusta Prep boys soccer team to play in the spring and keep a new football team from directly competing for athletes with the well-established Cavaliers soccer program.
Once the news came from the GISA office, Holodak said he began to actively explore the possibility of adding a football program.
"A month ago we had a meeting with some parents," he said. "I just wanted to see if people were interested."
The interest was enough to prompt the creation of a weeklong youth football camp July 9-12 for boys and girls ages 7-12. Augusta Prep assistant baseball coach Tyler Bromley will lead the football skills camp and said the instructors will concentrate on speed training, throwing, catching, route running and pass defense.
Bromley said 20 children already have signed up for the camp, and he expects as many as 30 could attend.
"We're just trying to generate a little interest in the sport," he said. "It seems like there's a lot of kids ready to play."
Holodak said the football camp was created in anticipation of starting a football program in the fall.
"What we're looking to do is next year have intramurals. I'm hoping to have about a dozen third- and fourth-graders and a dozen fifth- and sixth-graders," Holodak said. "We'll have a blue team and a gold team and play flag football. I want to make it a little serious and still fun, then next year we'll see what we have."
Holodak, who spent time coaching at Green Hills School in Dallas before coming to Augusta Prep, is no stranger to a football field. High school football in Texas is serious business.
"When I was there, they always said there are two sports - football and spring football," he said. "It's different here. I've been away from Friday night football for five years, and I miss it."
For information on the football skills camp, call Bromley at (706) 667-6330.
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