By Kennedy Curley | Staff Writer
As football season approaches, the varsity team is preparing to pick up where they left off last year, which was with a playoff appearance.
They will be facing new competition this year and have been working hard to meet the expectations that come with being in the highest classification in Texas.
“I believe that having been a part of a playoff team last year will help us work harder to achieve bigger and better goals for next year, so that we can surpass what we’ve already achieved,” senior left guard Kenny Lawrence said.
In their new division, the team will face off against Richardson, Lake Highlands and Berkner again.
The new district opponents will include Highland Park, North Mesquite, Mesquite and Mesquite Horn.
The out-of-district teams will include McKinney, South Garland and McKinney North.
“I feel like it will be a great challenge for the team to face, but I feel like it is definitely within our grasp,” Kenny said. “Our competition in 6A is filled with young men who suit up and play football just like we do.”
One of the main challenges the team will face is the loss of five coaches, one being the defensive coordinator. This year, they’ll have a new coach for the offensive line, defensive line, secondary and wide receivers.
With the offensive coordinator staying the same, the offensive scheme should remain similar, but the defensive scheme could change depending on the new defensive coordinator.
“Personally I believe that our defense will see no troubles transitioning to a new coaching staff,” senior defensive lineman Kasra Karimi said. “Even if changes are made, I believe that we have a pretty flexible defense that can handle a few changes here and there.”
In addition to the loss of coaches, many starters have already left, leaving their positions open for this current group to claim.
The only returning starters next year will be quarterback Hank Hughes, left tackle Sam Davis, free safety Rob Kuhne and middle linebacker Kaleb Gillenwater, who played defensive line last year.
“To be honest, we’re more undersized than we were last year,” senior wide receiver Josh Ochoa said. “However, if we play with more effort than last year’s seniors, and we play smarter than them, there is no reason that we can’t perform as well, if not better than, the team did last year.”
The season begins Aug. 29 against McKinney.