Jeff Highfill has been a staple at William Byrd, coaching the Terriers for 33 years.
During his time he's seen a lot of changes, and as the season approaches, the Terriers are off to a lot faster of a start with the VSHL allowing more year-round contact with the players.
“We've had 55 kids coming out the past couple of weeks working hard,” Highfill said. “Then you have another dozen kids show up you didn't expect to come out. So you throw them in but now with the new rule that you can sort of do more stuff year round that certainly changes some of the outlook that you have on the first day. We hit the field running more than we used to, so I think everyone is excited. Numbers are up from last year so we're all excited and looking forward to it. We've been doing more year-round so we're a little more advanced this year than we're used to. With a good nucleus back we're hoping to be a little bit ahead of ourselves, come the first game. We hope to do a few different things. We're hoping to hit the kids with a little bit more even the new kids because they have been around during the summer we've gotten a fair number of reps.”
Byrd was 5-7 last season, making it to the post-season despite having a losing record. Their season came to an end by the hands of Heritage in the first round of the playoffs.
This season the Terriers are aiming for their first winning season since 2008, when they finished 7-4. Byrd opens the season at home against Cave Spring on August 30th.