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Eye on the Gridiron:  Cook looking forward
by Reggie Ross, Staff Writer
Jul 31, 2014 | 149 views | 0 0 comments | 1 1 recommendations | email to a friend | print
For me, Julius Cook came out of nowhere last year and showed everyone he had the potential to be that sure handed receiver that the J.Z. George Jaguars needed. Then there was injury.

Cook sat out a chunk of games in the 2013 season due to a severe ankle sprain, this after being team leader in receiving.

As far as numbers are concerned, those games cost Cook for the season, and he finished the season with 11 grabs and over 100 yards receiving.

Cook is looking forward to this season.

Prepping for his final season in a J.Z. George uniform, Cook has spent hours in the weight room and has impressed those close to the Jaguars program.

“He’s dedicated and has been here everyday,” Jaguars head coach Ben Burton said. “He’s really been pushing himself.”

For Cook, under what he calls “The Burton System,” he knows the ball will come his way, and he wants to be prepared for it.

“I’ve gotten stronger,” he said. “That ankle injury really slowed me a bit, so I’ve worked on getting faster, too.”

Cook, who lives in Coila with his aunt Bertha Woodley, said he pulls tires to get stronger and faster and wants to get back to the form he was in last year when he was the primary target for the Jags.

The Jaguars managed to squeeze out five wins on the season and earn a spot in the 2A playoffs. In their new Region 3-2A, the Jaguars fought against a Delta-laden district including West Bolivar, South Delta, Hollandale, Leland and Riverside. J.Z. George would earn the fourth spot in that district before falling in the hands of Calhoun City in the first round of the playoffs.

For Cook, he said this year’s team is very fast and expects them to be in the mix of teams in the 2A playoff picture. He said Burton’s new system is a good one that players have definitely bought into.

“We’re a better team this year,” Cook said. “Players are stronger, and we have speed. We have several that run in the high fours. Now, with everyone on the same page, we will be one of the teams that teams will know about. We proved that last year.”

As the days draw closer to the start of summer practices, Cook said he will continue to work and become one of those unstoppable players.

“I want to play at the next level,” Cook said. “I’m healthy, and I have something to prove. With my confidence right now, I want to be the best receiver out there.”

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