The WTCS Crusaders will be trying their hand at 6-man football for the first time this fall.

Many high school football teams in Williams County will be starting their first day of training camp on Monday, Aug. 12. This year, Williston Trinity Christian Schools will also be among that group once again.

After having their own 9-man football team in the mid-to-late 2000s, and then later sharing a co-operative with Trenton High School, WTCS will be rebooting its high school program in 6-man competition. To help lead the way in this new journey, the Crusaders have enlisted the help of their assistant track and field coach John Washington.

Washington has an accomplished career on the football gridiron himself as he played wide receiver for the Horned Frogs of Texas Christian University from 1993-1996. During his collegiate career, Washington collected 135 receptions for 1,685 yards and 11 touchdowns. Afterwards, the pass catching specialist spent time as a member of the NFL’s New York Giants and Dallas Cowboys.

As far as expectations are concerned, Washington tells the Williston Herald that the safety of the players are his number one priority. Meanwhile, the main focus his club’s first training camp will be all about fundamentals.

“I’m going to be paying very close attention to their technique, because when you’re starting up a new program from scratch, most of our players don’t have alot of experience,” Washington states. “I want to put the kids in a position to be successful without getting hurt.”

As it turns out, two of the Crusaders’ standout cross country athletes, Ethan Decker and Colby Grindeland, are likely to trade in their running shoes in exchange for helmets and pads this fall. Coach Washington is excited to see how the pair’s natural athletic ability will translate to a different sport.

“It’s good to get kids who have participated in other sports because they already know how to compete, now it’s just a matter of getting their timing down so they can use their athleticism in game situations.

“This is all about the kids staying safe and having fun, and if we can get a few wins and build some momentum, maybe it will inspire more kids to come out for football in the future,” he adds.

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