Edmonson Voice Sports:
In just over a week, the Edmonson County Wildcats are scheduled to open up the 2017 football season at home under the newly installed bright lights at Wildcat Stadium against the Caverna Colonels on Friday, August 18, at 7pm. With ECHS losing eight seniors from last year, including Daniel Caudill who was 3A District 2 Player of the Year, some aren't sure what to expect from the Wildcats; however, Coach Nathan Smith and his guys have been working hard for months in preparation for next Friday night.
"Losing last year's seniors is going to hurt us in several different spots," said Smith. "Obviously Daniel leaves a huge hole that we will try to fill by committee. We have several guys that will take bigger roles in the offense, including junior Kenny Logsdon, as well as seniors Brayden Carey and Zack Farmer to see a lot of carries. And expect senior Logan Lindsey to catch several passes as well."
Smith said the Wildcats will also look for other familiar faces to step up in other departments.
"Tucker Cole is a three-year starter at quarterback and has made some great strides this summer in leading his team," Smith said. " I look to have a huge year from Logan Hagan who battled injury most of last season. Brett Brannon, last year's leading tackler should anchor the LB core and be a real special teams weapon (kicker/Punter). Every Offensive lineman we have started multiple games last year, so they are a really experienced group."
With the loss of personnel, teams have to either fill the gaps, get creative, or both. Coach Smith has a positive outlook on what you can expect from his team on both offense and defense.
"We've done a few things to tweak the offense to allow our multitude of skill players to be able to showcase what they bring to the table. Expect more diversity on offense with Kenny pounding away in the middle as Brayden, Zack and Tucker provide us with speed," he said. "Defensively, we have to switch things up quite a bit--Going back to an older system that we ran here for many years. It's much more comfortable for us to coach, and the kids like the simplicity of the scheme that allows them to just play football."
So are fans looking for the playoffs, beyond, or are they simply going to compare this team to last year's? Coach Smith simply seems to be focused on working one game at a time.
"I have very high expectations for this season. We lost five game last year by a touchdown or less so we've focused on finishing games and have been very motivated by our near misses from last year. We return 75 percent of starters on both sides of the ball."
The WildcatsLive broadcast team will be back in action once again this year as the exclusive broadcast provider of ECHS Football games. If you can't make it to Wildcat Stadium on Friday, August 18, just click on the WildcatsLive page and listen to all the games live this season with Scott Lindsey and Brian Alexander.