Every day of summer practice is another opportunity for Lloyd Yates to connect with his new wide receivers.
Yates verbally committed July 17 to play for Northwestern, so now that his recruiting concerns are out of the way, the 6-foot-2, 185-pound senior can return to addressing his biggest priority of the summer — developing chemistry with his passing targets.
Senior Kejuan Ratcliff is Yates’s top returning receiver after the Huskies lost virtually its entire receiving corps. Purdue-bound receiver Simmie Cobbs graduated as OPRF’s top receiver last season. His classmates included Ryan Chancellor, Jamal Baggett, Jeremy Moore, Xavier Rowe and running back Mike Hayden.
Before the summer, Yates met with his new receivers at the school practice field to go through routes and some plays.
“[Practices] are huge,”Yates said. “You can’t develop chemistry overnight. We have to do the extra work.”
OPRF ended its 7-on-7 season at its own session July 16 and competed in the 11-team West Suburban Conference 7-on-7 July 10 at Addison Trail. The Huskies now take a break until the beginning of preseason practice Aug. 11.
“This year I do not have anyone like Simmie Cobbs,” Yates said of the Indiana commitment. “Last year he could make plays on every play, cold. He was 6-[foot]-5, 205 pounds.”