Q. How would you characterize this year’s team?
A. Experienced upperclassmen with some talented young guys filling some spots.
Q. What will be the keys to your success?
A. Staying healthy is always a major factor, but guys stepping up to fill the roles left by last year’s seniors is key.
Q. Who will be your key leaders on the team?
A. Ben Jenkins (Sr., FB/LB), Garrett Richardson (Sr., WR/DB), Gavin Chambers (Sr., QB), and TJ Patton (Sr., FB/LB).
Q. What are your biggest reasons for optimism?
A. The number of returning starters is a big bright spot. A lot of the guys have played as sophomores and juniors and gained valuable experience.
Q. What will keep you up at night?
A. Depth and the fact that we lost a lot of production from our seniors last year. We need to find some players to fill those holes to allow us to continue to be successful.
Q. What can you build on from last year?
A. Our guys bounced back from a rough 2016 and faced some similar adversity, but we did not let it tear us down. The starters we have coming back are great leaders and have pushed to improve themselves from last season.
Q. Any lessons learned from last year?
A. We lost three games by a total of five points in our region. Our guys have seen that focusing on the smallest details can make us a better team. Little things could have put us in first place in our region instead of fourth.
Q. Will we see anything different this year?
A. No, we will still be in the spread and a stack defensively.
The experience we have returning is very exciting for the upcoming season. With the returning starters and some younger players stepping up, I think we could have a good season if we can stay healthy.
Photos by Andy Mitchell and Soddy Daisy High School