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District 2A-2 football preview: Offseason changes paying off for Christian Heritage Academy

One of the biggest differences for Christian Heritage through the first few days of practice has been the amount of work they've been able to do early.
by Ryan Aber and Scott Wright Published: August 8, 2012

One of the biggest differences for Christian Heritage through the first few days of practice has been the amount of work they've been able to do early.

“Overall, as a team, we're in the best shape we've been in in several years,” Crusaders coach John Merrell said. “We did a little bit better job with our summer workouts. We didn't focus as much on lifting weights as we had in the past, we really worked on the cardio and that's paying off.”

CHA returns six starters on each side of the ball, including most of a strong front seven on defense.

“We're pretty optimistic about things,” Merrell said. “We've got a murderous schedule, but we're really looking forward to it.”

The Crusaders, in addition to their district games, play a non-district schedule that includes two-time defending champion Hennessey, Lincoln Christian, Stroud and Mount St. Mary's.


After an expected light day Thursday, Dibble coach J.R. Conrad plans to put his players through the “Oklahoma Drill” on Friday as the team practices with pads for the first time.

“To me, I think that's what kind of defines you,” Conrad said. “It's not a test of manhood but just seeing all the guys go through that helps make your team.”

As much as anything, Conrad said, the drill helps bring the team together.

“You want everyone to see your quarterback in there getting hit,” Conrad said. “You want them to know everybody's committed and everyone's making the same sacrifices.


Millwood graduated a few important pieces off last year's Class 2A semifinal squad, but the number of juniors, sophomores and freshmen who contributed was immense.

That's why the Falcons are among the top contenders in 2A, with returning players like quarterback London Potts, linebacker Larry Lambeth, and defensive back Dashawn Stephens.

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by Ryan Aber
OU Athletics Reporter
Ryan Aber has worked for The Oklahoman since 2006, covering high schools, the Oklahoma City RedHawks, the Oklahoma City Barons and OU football recruiting. An Oklahoma City native, Aber graduated from Northeastern State. Before joining The...
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by Scott Wright
A lifelong resident of the Oklahoma City metro area, Scott Wright has been on The Oklahoman staff since 2005, covering a little bit of everything on the state's sports scene. He has been a beat writer for football and basketball at Oklahoma and...
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District 2A-2 coaches' poll

1. Millwood (11-3)

2. OCS (9-3)

3. Christian Heritage (5-5)

4. Luther (5-6)

5. Dibble (8-5)

6. Northeast (3-7)

7. Crooked Oak (1-9)

Note: Last year's records in parentheses


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