Ed Shepherd
SWAC Junior Football Seniors division players running during a recent practice at Chief Sealth High School.

SLIDESHOW: SWAC Cougars will host Jamboree Aug. 24; Junior football is about to kickoff

By Ed Shepherd

Tick, tick, tick...
It's time for the SWAC Cougars to play ball after they began practicing back on July 28.

They are getting ready to host the Greater Seattle Youth Football League's Jamboree on Sunday, Aug. 24 before the CD Panthers come to Chief Sealth High School for the first game of the season Sept. 6.

Seniors coach Shon Sweet leads the group of players who mostly were together winning a Juniors division championship last season, beating the Kent Cobras, 19-18. But one learns from talking to him that there's a lot more to be learned in football than just winning the championship.

"We want to teach these kids about winning in life," said Sweet, who coached as an assistant on that Virgil Riley coached Juniors champion team.

Riley's been coaching SWAC a long time, 17 years, and he turned the reins of the Juniors over to another coach and stepped in under Sweet this season as an assistant on the Seniors team.

More ›

SportsWatch for 8-18-14


Week of Aug. 20-27
High schools
Football tryouts officially begin Wednesday across the state of Washington, and all other fall sports get underway Monday.
Contact your respective school for more information.

Seattle will be at home at CenturyLink Field on Wednesday when it hosts the San Jose Earthquakes for a 7 p.m. Major League Soccer match that can be seen on JOEtv.
The Sounders go to Portland for 2 p.m. action Sunday, with ESPN2 carrying that action.

Seattle hosts the Chicago Bears for a 7 p.m. National Football League exhibition game at CenturyLink Field on Friday.
The action can be seen live on Channel 13.

The Seattle Mariners continue their quest for a postseason berth Wednesday when they pay a 10:05 a.m. visit to the Philadelphia Phillies.
Then it's on to Boston for a 4:10 p.m. game against the Red Sox on Friday followed by 10:35 a.m. action on Saturday and Sunday.
Seattle comes home to Safeco Field to play the Texas Rangers at 7:10 p.m. Monday and Tuesday and at 12:40 p.m. next Wednesday.

More ›
Ed Shepherd
Kyle Mack getting ahold of the shirt of Devonte Watley in a tackling drill of a recent Wildcats Junior Football practice. Coach Joel Gaither, in red shirt, watching the play.

SLIDESHOW: West Seattle Juniors ready to roll; Football season brings lots of expectations

By Ed Shepherd

It's time !
Time for players to slap on the shoulder pads, throw on the jersey, fit on the helmet and lace up the cleats. It's time for West Seattle Wildcats Junior League football.

Only practices so far, as the jamboree is still to come on Saturday Aug. 23, but these players for the six divisions, from the six and seven year old youngest level, 76ers, to the oldest, 14 year old Seniors, are making the most of practice time right now.

And coaches are ready,too, prepared well to take on this task, having to spend time before practice even begins -- in early August -- learning how to coach in the junior football league.

"Coaches have to take the USA Heads Up Football online testing, learning things like hydration, equipment fitting, proper tackling, and also receive certification from a coaches clinic that takes a half-day, too," said Joel Gaither, who coaches the Bantams and Juniors, 10 to 13 year olds, for those two divisions.

More ›