Port-Neches Groves quarterback speaks on upcoming season

Published 12:38 am Sunday, June 18, 2023

PORT NECHES — This week Shea Adams received his third offer to play college football. The offer from the U.S. Navy joins offers from Lamar University and the University of the Incarnate Word.

But in less than a year, the incoming senior could be fielding a number of additional offers after he steps into a new role.

Adams, who played as a wide receiver and backup quarterback during the 2022 season, will lead the Indians this fall as their starting quarterback.

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“I grew up playing quarterback, so I’m fine with it,” he said. “I really like the role I had last year, but I can’t complain too much being the starting quarterback.”

Adams is replacing Cole Crippen — one of several starters to graduate last month.

“We’re going to be a lot younger team and kind of inexperienced, but we’re still going to have a lot of good kids,” Adams said. “We’re going to be good.”

The group is currently working on conditioning, lifting and some drills. Under UIL direction, they can’t practice in full gear until August.

But that hasn’t stopped the new group from working together to hopefully recreate a historic season.

In 2022, first-year Head Coach Jeff Joseph led the Indians to the State Championship game for the first time since 1999.

“Going into last year, I didn’t know what to think,” Adams said. “But obviously he led us to state for the first time in forever, so I’m just really excited and honored to have Coach Joseph coaching us. I think we really all have faith in him now, especially after what he did last season.”

Adams wasn’t the only one.

When Joseph was announced as the lone candidate of 45 applicants in February 2022, PNGISD trustee Scott Bartlett said change is hard but exciting.

“Having someone come in and implement their philosophy with our student athletes is going to be exciting,” he said. ”I am ready to see what he brings to the field.”

And the result was a community united in a way not done for decades.

As the new season draws closer, Adams is appreciative of the college offers but is choosing to focus on what’s directly in front of him.

“I’m just trying to soak it in,” he said. “We get the 100th year of Mid County Madness, so that should be good. I’m just trying to not let my head get too big and think about college too much, just trying to stay in this last season and enjoy high school while it’s still here.”

And he already has his sights set on one game in particular.

“The first thing I want to do is start off better against Port Arthur this year, unlike last year,” he said. “That’s the first thing on my mind. I really look forward to that game every year, district or not. But I’d love to make a deep playoff run again.”