Alex Kemp—Paper or Plastic
“We are having a great off season,” Defensive End Alex Kemp said. “We will have a different mind set this year.”
The All-District Defensive End will be the linchpin for how this defense will respond to the season. The Hawks lost players that had a lot of impressive stats, but the flip side are the number of players that are returning and ready to make their own mark.
For the Hawks to establish enough momentum heading into the last half of the season, then the performance needs to mirror last years team.
The first seven games last season the defense gave up an average of 28.6 points per game. The last five games the team dropped that number to 15.6 points per game.
That is almost two touchdowns difference which also helped the record during that time period to a 4-1 win/loss including two playoff games.
“My mind set is to step it up and lead the defense,” Senior Kemp said confidently. “We have several that will step it up……Travis (Walker) is coming back and (Isaac) Pruna will do tremendous at linebacker.”
“Jaaz McNair switch over to defense will help too,” Kemp continued.
You get the idea the defense hopes to not miss a beat. The one main topic in listening to the coaches and players is the word ‘depth’.
The Junior Varsity brings an undefeated record to the team, but that won’t mean much if the team does not adjust to the speed of the game that was not realized the previous year.
“I expect to be double teamed and maybe even a running back might come in to block me,” Kemp interjected. “The Junior Varsity will have to prove themselves and they are still at the bottom of the totem pole. They are not guaranteed a spot.”
Canyon Lake can realize a good season if the defense can improve. The defense has several marks still out their for the team to accomplish. How about a shut-out…
Alex Kemp did finish his first season with nine sacks which is only one sack off the career mark held by graduate J. Garrett Grooms with 10.
The schedule always has a few teams that run the ball the majority of the time. Navarro comes to mind… to have nine sacks with a schedule of teams that don’t pass as much is quite an accomplishment.
Kemp also had the second most tackles for loss in one season with 15. Once again he will be chasing Grooms for the all time lead of 18 in that category.
“I don’t expect much of a break and so I have been working on my cardio vascular,” Kemp finished. “When we flip tires, we ask for bigger tires and now we want them (the coaches) to fill them with cement to make the tires heavier.”
Alex Kemp is not shy in what he hopes to manage to achieve.
“Win State,” Kemp said. “I also want to have 15 sacks and be All-State.”
Leadership is not only learned by telling others, but performing on the field and showing teammates by example.
Judging by talking to Kemp, I felt like I was at HEB and he was going to ask me if I wanted “paper or plastic”… Sacks will be plentiful at Canyon Lake High this fall.