1- 2020 was your first full season with the team as the head coach. Other than working through covid what was the biggest adjustment for you as far as coaching went?
This 2020 season was very challenging for many reasons. The main issue was the lack of spring and summer lifting and conditioning that we were able to do. Once we were able to get rolling in August our schedule was pretty consistent but as a young team, we desperately needed that time in the offseason.
2-What changes will we see from the team this coming season?
We only graduate 5 seniors so there won’t be many changes as far as the kids on the field. You will see a lot more experience on the field and you will see bigger, faster, and stronger kids flying around with confidence.
3-Being as close to Ohio as you are will we see any Ohio teams on the schedule? Brookville and Northeastern I think would be a fun game and the two schools are roughly 35 miles apart.
With our conference (TEC) having 9 teams, we are limited to only one non-conference game each season. We have week 7 as our NC game against Shenandoah. I have always heard Ohio schools are hesitant to schedule Indiana teams because of the Ohio playoff system and a win over an out of state school not being beneficial. I would love to get an Ohio school on the schedule in the future because I know it’s great football across the border. Teams like National Trail, Tri-Village, Brookville, and even Eaton would be a great test for us.
4- In a perfect world meaning if you had the talent to do it what offense and defense would you run?
I think the spread offense with a QB who can run it and throw it is so hard to defend.
I think the 3-5 defense would be fun to run if you had 5 or 6 hybrid kids who could play multiple positions and execute multiple responsibilities.
5- As a fan, I very much enjoy the Thursday night and Saturday afternoon games I get to in Ohio. Do you think that would work in Indiana?
I think that would be a great wrinkle and would help out with the referee shortage we are seeing. You could go scout more games and I think you would have bigger crowds. After having a bye week this season in the sectional, I also think that would be a nice addition to the season schedule.
6- You have a 3 year starting QB and an incoming Freshman who is getting a lot of publicity from the national football magazines and is already being named a 4-star recruit. How tough will it be to tell the starter he is moving to another position?
Well, the first thing is the incoming freshman would have to compete for and earn the starting spot. If that were to happen then it would be an easy conversation with the 3-year starter. If he’s a leader on the team he will just want an opportunity to help the team no matter the position.
7- 4th and goal from the 4-yard line and you are down four with no timeouts. What play are you calling?
A quick fade to the corner pylon. Just kidding. Something with misdirection and something with a run/pass option after the misdirection.
8- Who is the best player you ever played or coached against?
I’ve got 2 that come to mind. Coached against Kiante Enis from Winchester and Spencer Gilbert from Eastern Hancock. Enis went to IU and Gilbert to Ball State. Enis had blazing speed and could turn any play into an 80 yard TD. Gilbert had speed and could run you over. Both unreal football players.
9- Is there a coach you really enjoy getting the best of?
None are more enjoyable than the others. All wins are great but all the coaches in our conference do a great job with their programs. I am the least tenured coach in the TEC so I still have a lot to learn. Coach McCaslin and Shenandoah are the only team we haven’t beaten since I’ve been coaching at Northeastern so a win against them would be nice. He has a great program and always gets the most out of his kids.
10-Do you like the set up you guys have in Indiana with all teams making the playoffs? Why or why not?
I like it because as a small school you could have an injury or two really affect your season and affect your ability to get into the playoffs. In Indiana, you start over fresh come tourney time no matter what happened those first 9 games. I do wish they would seed the sectional. We have the Sagarin ratings which take into account schedule strength and results. That way the best teams are set up to be playing the most games and are rewarded for having great regular seasons.