(COVINGTON, La.) — Every Wednesday night, you can watch a group of football players who don’t typically get to play on Fridays. They are the second-stringers, the successors to the seniors who will graduate and leave their slots unfilled. They are the Junior Varsity players, and I am one of them.
The JV team is the last developmental stage in the St. Paul’s Wolves football system before Friday Night Lights. When on the Junior Varsity team, depending on your talent level, you could see time playing on Fridays, but it is usually limited. I have seen some time on varsity, along with fellow teammates Michael Philippe, Austin Holincheck, Connor Stuard, Gabe Ingram, Conrad Robinson and others.
However, one of the primary rolls of the JV team is to be the Defensive Scout Team during the week. We don’t get the day off just because we have to play a game that night. We still run our regular practice routine and still hit and hustle as hard as we can. On Wednesdays, they don’t film the games, we don’t get a band, and we don’t get the big screen turned on. To play for JV, you must simply love the game of football and want to become a better player.
On Fridays, we all are there to support our friends as they play the big game at the end of the week. Some of us will be in their shoes next year, but for now, we are learners. Our current job is to prepare the starters for the upcoming game, whatever opponent that may be. When I say learners, I mean we must watch and follow the older guys’ every move. We must shadow them, work as hard as them, and really just learn everything they know to keep the tradition of a great football team going. We all support each other and only want the best for this team and the program. The Class of 2017 can rest easy knowing that the team is in good hands after this year, because the JV players have all the heart in the world and the willingness to keep this tradition going.