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High school scrimmages help decide who starts

– The high school football scrimmages held a week before the start of the regular season are for more than just the players. The scrimmages also act as an extra practice, just against another team, for the coaches.

A scrimmage can be the final factor in deciding starting positions and gives a better indication of preseason progress than intrasquad practices.

“We will evaluate film and look at who played, who aligned properly and we’ll grade every player on every play and see how they performed,” Carroll coach Doug Dinan said after his team’s scrimmage Friday at home against North Side. “There are some spots that are still up in the air in terms of who’s going to be starting at this point, and this helps us evaluate it even more.”

The scrimmage also acts as a game simulation for coaches in terms of calling plays and interacting with players.

“We call offense and defense (plays) just as we do in a regular game, so it gets your coaching staff flowing and in the game,” North Side coach Ryan Hall said.

From the players’ standpoint, however, the scrimmages allowed some younger players to get a first look at varsity play.

“We have a lot of young guys coming in and filling in, so I think it was just good for them to get experience and get a first-hand look at some competition,” Carroll senior receiver/linebacker Drue Tranquill said.

“The pace is different so getting used to that was just huge for them.”

For some seniors like Tranquill, the scrimmage provides the opportunity just to get back in the game.

“It was great to get out, hit some other guys against another team,” he said.

Carroll opens the season next Friday at home against Goshen. Goshen coach Mike Cheviron is a former Carroll coach.

North Side opens the season against Concordia.

“We’ve beaten them the past few years, but they’re scary to play,” Hall said of the Cadets. “I mean, everybody’s scary to play because you don’t know enough about them the first week out.”