Negaunee, Mich. (WJMN) – The Negaunee Miners are one of three U.P. football teams still holding out hope to finish their season after taking a 3-week pause due to rising coronavirus cases throughout the state.
“There’s only so many things that we can control. As a team, as a staff, as an individual. We really focused on what we needed to do to prepare ourselves for that next opportunity,” said Paul Jacobson, the head coach for Negaunee Football & Athletic Director at NHS.
Negaunee head coach Paul Jacobson says he feels his team is right where they need to be.
His players have been staying mentally engaged and staying in shape through the help of advantage training.
Coming off a three-week playoff run with Gladstone, Westwood, and Calumet. You know, it’s some physical play. So, you know what? To a certain extent, it’s good to get a break to get your bodies back fresh, and I feel we can do that. Um, we’re really communicating with our kids as much as possible. Sending messages and watching film and preparing ourselves physically,” said Jacobson.
The Miners will play at grayling in their regional championship. That game is tentatively scheduled for December 16th. That all hangs on the update given by governor Whitmer, Friday.
“There’s some familiarity with Grayling. They’re good. As I said, they’re one of eight teams like us looking for a state championship. They have some good athletes, I think they’re pretty good upfront. We obviously have our handful, but in the same respect, I think so do they with the way we’re playing right now,” said Jacobson.
Jacobson says he applauds his players for fighting through adversity something they’ve been doing all season.
“One of the biggest things about this team that I see is how resilient they are. How incredible they are as people first of all. They came together, they continue to come together. They’re friends on the field as well as off the field. To take breaks and then to come back and continue to work. As I said, we’ve been doing this since August 10th. There are the ups and downs. It is mentally draining and I feel it as a coach. I can imagine what it is as a player.”
And if when all said the miners can finish with a state title. That would be a pretty great story to tell.
” I kind of joke with my kids a little bit and the football players that they’ll be talking about this at their 10 and 20-year reunion and everything else. It’s been great. We’ve done a great job educating our kids first of all at Negaunee with the whole virtual schooling and our kids athletically have done a great job. So, we’re fortunate. I’m fortunate to be surrounded by great people and great kids.”