HAMPSHIRE – A month into summer camp, Hampshire football coach Jake Brosman finally has a place to call home.
Brosman, his wife, Megan, and their two young children moved to Algonquin last week. Since he took over as coach, Brosman had been staying with a friend in Crystal Lake while he and his family prepared to move from the Peoria area.
“I was able to have a solid living situation the first couple weeks,” Brosman said. “I bounced around a couple times. It was good, though.”
Brosman was an assistant coach at Dunlap the past six seasons. He takes over at Hampshire for Mike Brasile, now the coach at Woodstock. Brosman is a first-time head coach.
The Whip-Purs are four weeks into summer camp under their new coach.
“Everything was kind of uncertain,” Brosman said. “I have my ideas of everything I want, what I want it to look like. I’ve got to ... adjust to everything that these kids are showing me they can do.”
There was a lot of uncertainty during those intervening months.
“That was tough,” senior running back Jake See said. “We had some assistant coaches who stepped up to the plate when Brasile left.”
See, a third-year varsity player, said he was shocked when Brasile left. When Brosman stepped in, See could tell he was a likable person, someone he could “talk to about anything.”
“It was easy for us to take him as our leader,” See said. “He’s got us ready and made it clear that he doesn’t want another 1-8 season, as we all feel.”
Brosman wants his players to be efficient. They spend only 45 minutes in the weight room as a team, but those 45 minutes are intense. He has brought a new motto to the Whip-Purs: “ADD it up,” with ADD standing for attitude, discipline and detail.
Senior offensive lineman Evan Wendt noted that while things have been different, it has been a good different.
“I feel like a lot of guys are working a lot harder,” Wendt said. “[Brosman] seemed knowledgeable, he seemed like he knew the game. He wanted to get to know us as players. I appreciated that.”
The new playbook will take some time to adjust to. Brosman has worked on both sides of the ball but will focus on the offense this season.
He said Hampshire’s participation numbers weren’t as high as he wanted, but more than 80 players in camp is a “solid” turnout. Last year’s 1-8 finish marked the second straight season in which Hampshire missed the playoffs.
“We’re going to be undersized in our conference, and I’ve talked about how we’re going to have to outwork every single opponent,” Brosman said. “If we really want to get in the win column week to week, we’ve got to work our tails off.”