MINONK (HOI) -- Since June 6th high school teams have had the green light from IHSA to get together in small groups and workout.
There's definitely been a different vibe this summer as those teams prepare for the upcoming football season. However, Fieldcrest players and coaches say it's still better than it was just a couple months ago.
"This is the longest we've gone into the summer, into the school year without being around football," said Fieldcrest Football Head Coach, Mike Freeman.
Right now the workout sessions consist of groups of 10 or less working on agility and speed drills. Not a football in sight.
"You know it's nice being able to actually finally see people in organized practices and stuff, not just lifting on our own," said Travis Sunken, a Fieldcrest senior.
Some good news for teams moving forward, Illinois is expected to move into "Phase 4" on Friday, June 26. A requirement for IHSA to move into "Stage 2" of their return to play plan.
"It looks like as we clean the equipment and do things according to the guidelines, we should be able to have a pretty normal practice for July, where we're running plays and getting our footwork down and some classroom stuff," explained Freeman.
"Stage 2" means gatherings of up to 50 players and coaches. Plus voluntary contact days can begin.
"That's a big change, just going from agility to actually playing football. So get us ready as soon as possible," added Sunken.
"We're just really excited. Blessed to be able to do anything, based on how we were a couple months ago," continued Freeman.
Like most teams, Fieldcrest is still expecting to kickoff the season in late August.
For the latest updates on the IHSA, you can visit their website here.