It’s a whole new league out there for Nevada Union |

It’s a whole new league out there for Nevada Union

Let the magic begin.

Monday was the first day of football practice for Nevada Union, one kept indoors because of air quality. No pads, no helmets, but lots of enthusiasm.

Only time will tell if Monday’s indoor practice will be the last time the Miners are contained this season.

“You look at different spots on the schedule with different levels of anticipation and excitement,” NU head coach Dave Humphers said. “I think what people will see is that we have a cohesive team and that the kids are very excited to get the season started.”

For Nevada Union High School football fans, the upcoming season will bring forth a few changes of note. The season, for one thing, will begin this year one week later than it did last year, with the first preseason game of the year for the varsity to be played at Merced against the Merced Bears Sept. 13. The first NU varsity home game of the preseason will be against the Vintage Crushers Sept. 20, followed a week later by a showdown with Sac-Joaquin champ and playoff nemesis Elk Grove, also at home.

This year, NU will change over in full into being a Metro League school, which means the Oct. 5 away game with Del Campo will be a non-league game.

“Overall, the Metro League will have more speed,” Humphers said. “Each team will have more fast players on it. We’ve always been a speed team, but we’ll be playing against teams that are also fast.”

Other games of note for the Miners’ varsity squad this year include league games at home against Hiram Johnson (Oct. 11), Homecoming versus McClatchy (Oct. 18), with the final regular season home game for the varsity being played against an experienced team from Woodland Nov. 1.

“Woodland will be a key game,” Humphers said. “They were a team that was dominated by juniors last year, so they should have most of their team back. They were an outstanding ball club.”

NU is scheduled to play its mid-season away game versus league opponent Kennedy at Hughes Stadium, Oct. 25. NU’s final two games of the season will be away games versus Yuba City, Nov. 8, with the finale of the regular season being played Friday night, Nov. 15, at Grant High School.

Humphers said that how focused and hard working his team is down the stretch should clear the air about how successful this year’s team will be.

Agreed. It will be hard work and execution that gets the job done for the Miners from now until November.

Monday’s air was deemed unhealthy for outdoor exertion. So be it. The NU football program stayed inside to continue work on a season that has been eyed since the day last year’s season ended.

In fact, air quality the past few weeks has been harsh in the foothills.

September’s air? Here’s a hunch the Miners’ passing attack will clear the air just fine.

Vince Vosti is a sports writer for The Union. He can be reached at 477-4267.

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