SethRoss_85613.jpg

NEW RICHMOND - It's been well-documented what first-year coach Larry Thompson is inheriting from last year's 2-8 team.

Back is leading rusher Caleb Bower, who rushed for 1,290 yards and 10 touchdowns.

Back are four starting linemen, led by tackle Tanner Jenkins, who is starting to gain some college recruiting notice, and center Josh Reilley.

Back are the team's top three receivers in Jake Bishop (28 receptions, 452 yards, five touchdowns), Bower (10-145-1) and Caden Lookabill (9-131-1).

Also added to the equation is the fact that several of the school's top athletes have decided to play football for the first time.

And then there is former Mount View coach Thompson, who had Golden Knights at the top of the Class A ratings last fall and led the team to the second round of the playoffs.

He has had the summer period to implement his offense.

He has watched enough film to know what his team has coming into in August.

These are all things that Thompson knows. What does he want to see accomplished by the start of the season?

"My only question is, what young guy on my team is going to blossom into a ball player in their first year?" Thompson said. "I have some stud ninth-graders coming up."

Obviously, with a group of talented returnees, several of them seniors, the freshmen, if any do indeed step up, will be used mainly in backup roles or on special teams.

Any freshmen who can break into the starting lineup on a veteran team on talent alone is really going to be a player to watch.

But, as we have seen in the recent past with a Thompson-led team, he is very adept at putting together teams that are built for the long haul.

His teams at Mount View continually got better, finally breaking through into the playoffs.

And the 30-year-old coach is very good at inspiring young players to get maximum use of their talents. He won't be afraid to put the best player on the field, despite class.

The Warriors will be idle the first week of the season, then open the 2019 season against rival Westside in the Battle for the Golden Shovel on Sept. 6.

Tags