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The City Journals

Jordan Football Getting Tough for 2016

Aug 24, 2016 02:06PM ● By Billy Swartzfager

All of Jordan’s football team for 2016 just prior to the annual team scrimmage. —Billy Swartzfager

By Billy Swartzfager | b[email protected]
Jordan’s football team is ready to tackle the 2016 season hard. The team has been focused on coming out more physical this season since getting bounced from the state bracket last year in a tough one-point loss to Pleasant Grove. Jordan, who took second in their region last season with a record of 8-3, is looking to take that physical focus all the way to a region title and a possible state championship. 
“We want to take region and then state, those are always our goals,” said Eric Kjar, Jordan’s head coach of eight seasons.   
His team has zeroed in on their physical toughness. The boys spent time during the offseason in the weight room and ran to stay on top of their conditioning for the grueling fall schedule. 
“We want to be the hardest-working team out there, a high-effort team, all the time,” Kjar said.
The team began practice officially on Aug. 1 and has added many competitive drills that require the players to get more physical, emphasizing the hard-working, one-more-try approach the team is going for. 
Kjar is hoping the mentality will culminate at the end of the season. He said the team functions very well as a tight-knit group, which has adopted the philosophy and has been applying efforts as a group since last season ended. 
“Together they will be able to dig deeper, working and striving to push themselves,” Kjar said. 
Kjar thinks the young men on his team have done a great job staying focused and preparing for football season, but also stated that the only way to truly be in shape for football is playing football. 
“We’re trying to get back into shape, getting back to being consistent with our techniques,” Kjar said about what their first weeks of practices were like. 
The team is led this year by several returning starters, many of whom will be part of Jordan’s potent offense. Senior Alec Evans will be a familiar face carrying the football at running back and outstanding receiver Spencer Curtis, also a senior, will be hauling in passes up and down the field. On defense, leading the rush and coverage will be outside linebacker, Beau McRae, who is a junior. On special teams, returner Malik Davis hopes to chew up some yardage in 2016. 
What makes Jordan a special team, according to Kjar, is the fact that they have stayed absolutely dedicated to the 2016 football season. His players were required to do a lot during the offseason; they have been staunch participants in the weight room and at the gym. 
“They have absolutely taken on every opportunity they have been given to get better,” Kjar said, “and it definitely shows on the field.”
The Beetdiggers opened their season against Desert Hills at home on Aug. 19. They will have to travel south to face off against Pleasant Grove, the team that eliminated Jordan in last year’s state tournament, in their third contest of the 2016 season. And they will play their second to last contest against region rival Bingham in mid-October, also an away game. The Beetdiggers will certainly be tested as the season advances, but they have done their diligence and are as prepared as a team who worked as hard as they did can be.