CLARKSBURG -- Robert C. Byrd's football program has a vision of a state title. It begins with weights.
The Eagles have been using a new state-of-the-art weight program since April. It's designed by Power Systems and cost $14,000. It was paid for by the RCB Friends of Football, as well as athletic and academic boosters.
"We just needed to upgrade the weight room," said Matt Huggins, one of Robert C. Byrd's strength coaches. "The stuff we had before was getting outdated and a little old."
Specifically, the old weights came from Roosevelt-Wilson High School, which closed in 1990. The new ones feature seven weight stations and 14 different exercises. The difference is noticeable.
"It can only help," said Matt Barberio, who will be a senior tight end in the fall. "We have it here, but what's really important is getting the people here to use it. It makes our weight lifting a lot faster and a lot more organized."
The idea of upgrading belongs to the coaching staff. There are hopes of stronger athletes producing better play on Friday nights. Robert C. Byrd has not made it past the second round of the playoffs. The new weight system could be the first step to changing that.
"We wanted to be able to compete with the upper echelon teams in AAA," strength coach Josh Gorrell said. "Strength training is important. Our goal is to win a state championship."
The new weights are also available to the Robert C. Byrd student body during the summer from 10 a.m. to noon on Monday, Wednesday and Friday and daily from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Sports writer Rob Peirce can be reached at 626-1444 or by e-mail at email@example.com.