The high school season is over two months away, but one local team is already gearing up just as school is letting out for the summer.
Dexter head football coach Aaron Pixley is running the first Bearcat camp all this week for returning and first time players.
"At Dexter," said Pixley, "we try and have the first week of our camp early in the summer to catch the kids before they have vacations or whatever. We want the kids thinking about football and then we will bring them back in July."
Expectations are high for the Bearcats this upcoming season after a district championship last year. The Bearcats were 7-4 last season with a sectional loss to area power Ste. Genevieve.
Dexter has a lot of talent and experience coming back at the skill positions and with 78 kids out for camp, interest is peaking in Bearcat Land.
According to Pixley, the first week of camp in Dexter is just a learning tool for the players and the coaches try and instill the basics of football to the players.
"The camp is a good teaching tool for the young kids new to our system," said Pixley. "The older guys have been through the program and are doing things they have been doing for five years.
"We are going through the basics of football. We have the kids start off with good stances. We try and get the splits right on the line. We teach the kids the basic offensive and defensive formations that we run."
With the recent tragic heat-related deaths nationwide, Pixley and his staff are keenly aware of the dangers associated with the players and the conditions.
"We give the kids a lot of water breaks and we keep track of the temperature," said Pixley. "If the heat is too much, we may go at night for some relief. We just try and beat the heat as best as we can.
"Sometimes it just comes down to good common sense on what is best for the kids."