There is never a good time for a lost season, but the Stamford football team missed a year when it had many veterans and a promising outlook. Now there is a group without varsity experience but possessing high hopes that untapped talent will bridge the gap.
One player the Black Knights will be counting on is Nyshawn Johnson, a receiver and safety who will be one of their leaders. Johnson spoke to The Ruden Report at the Grip It & Rip It 7-on-7 passing tournament at New Canaan on Friday.
You will have an inexperienced team with all new starters. How difficult will that be to start the season?
“I feel like it will be a little bit hard but at the same time all these seniors rising up played together on JV. There will be more competition. As long as we stay focused and make sure we give 110 percent every day we’ll compete with the bigger teams like New Canaan.”
What will be the keys to success for the team?
“I think the key is dedication. We have to come out to practice and work hard every day. Put in all the work that we can to be on the same track as other teams.”
With so many new players coming off a lost season, what have you been doing to build a team bond?
“We’ve been attending events like Grip It & Rip It, we’ve been to the Jason Garrett camp, we’ve been to the Jets camp and we have a whole bunch of clinics and other camps we’ve been going to also. We’ve been going over the playbook and getting the new kids used to their positions, working on their footwork and things like that.”
What will be the biggest strengths of the team this year?
“Our offense is very good. We just have to work a little bit harder on our line game. We don’t have that many big linemen this year. Offense I have the most confidence in but at the same time the defense can really lock down receivers.”
What is it like to have these tournaments so you all can finally get out there and compete against other teams?
“It has been a great experience honestly competing against all these teams from Bridgeport, New York and other cities. It has been a great experience and I’m glad I’ve gotten to participate in it.”
What’s the most fun thing you’ve done this summer that is not football related?
“Working at a camp right now. Having fun with that since the kids basically had their whole school year taken away.”