Kroner's football tour: B-H
BISMARCK — Seniors were the catalysts last fall as Bismarck-Henning produced the highest scoring offense in the Vermilion Valley Conference (more than 34 points per game) as well as the leading defensive unit (averaging one touchdown allowed every two games) while winning every regular season game.
“We’ll be a little smaller and a little different,” coach Mark Dodd said, “with a lot more question marks. We have the athletes and, as coaches, we’re working harder to get them in the right positions.”
Two of the senior anchors will be running back Patrick Ganley (1,454 rushing yards last season) and two-way tackle Wilde Garowski, the Blue Devils’ biggest player among the 53 on the team at 6-foot-5, 295 pounds,
“That’s a good place to start,” Dodd said. “We have a lot more competition going on. That’s a good sign for our program.”
Junior Dalton Strawser and sophomore Dylan Allen are the top quarterback candidates. Considering the inexperience, Dodd wasn’t certain what to expect during the first full week of practice.
“Starting from scratch, I thought we’d be a little further behind,” he said. “They’re starting off further along than we anticipated.”
Besides Ganley, other seniors who’ve lettered for two years are split end Dustyn Ingram and tight end Chase Swinford, both of whom will be fixtures on defense.
Defensive back Ingram and junior linebackers Mo Abbed and Braedon Lappin-Pratt are the lone returning regulars from a defense that yielded 35 points in 10 games.
The Blue Devils, who are 17-1 in the regular season the past two years (the loss was by six points to Salt Fork in 2011), open at home on Aug. 30 against Martinsville.