PEORIA, Ill. (WMBD/WYZZ) — Summer is now officially over.

At least for high school football players. Fall practice started Monday around the state and players were excited to begin the season.

“I’m very excited to be back out here with my guys,” said Bloomington senior quarterback Marcus Griffin. “Just to start football again.”

Players won’t practice in pads until the weekend. For now they are wearing shorts, t-shirts and helmets.

“It’s a new chapter. you know we’ve got to get started, get things going, get things back rolling,” said Ridgeview-Lexington senior Alec Thomas who was a part of the Mustang’s state semifinal team last fall. “Hopefully we get the same success we did last year.”

Football games begin Aug. 26.

“It’s always exciting, the first day. The nerves, the excitement, the anticipation of what’s happening,” said Dunlap head coach Brett Cazalet. ” Now that we’re through practice, I realize how much work we have to do in the next three weeks.”