Kroner's football tour '14: Georgetown-Ridge Farm
GEORGETOWN — There’s a new coach, new players and a new look to the program since the football cooperative agreement with neighboring Chrisman ended.
More than anything, there’s a new attitude among the football players at Georgetown-Ridge Farm.
“No backtalking, cursing has been eliminated and if you’re late, even a minute, it’s an extra 15 minutes after practice,” said former assistant Nathan West, who is in his first season as the Buffaloes head coach.
Depending on the practice, the post-practice workout for offenders could be running or conditioning. Or both. West is trying to get a point across.
“We want to make it like a professional atmosphere,” he said. “You can’t show up late for work.”
G-RF has a veteran look with nine starters back on offense and eight returning on defense. Some athletes will play more than others, but West said, “the big thing I’ve implemented is getting every kid to feel they are a part of the program. We’re trying to build from the ground up.”
One of last year’s top running backs, Troy Rodriguez, returns and will get help in the backfield from Oakwood transfer Zach Horatschki, who rushed for nearly 700 yards last year. Rodriguez ran for 861 yards. Quarterback Ethan Sliva, whom West said “is pretty skilled,” also returns.
The receiving corps features Rylee Goodwin, Aryn Vaughn, Chase Hughes and Dustin Campbell.
“It’s going to be hard to keep them off the field,” West said.
Neither Vaughn nor Campbell played a year ago.
Center Matt Willaman, a third-year starter, anchors the line. Jake Osborn is a guard, and Colby Roberson is shifting from guard to tackle, where he will be joined by Jesse Munoz. The other guard spot has a plethora of candidates, including Cole Dailey, Bryce Herrin and Easton Hoskins.
Many of the offensive mainstays will figure prominently into the defense.
“We’ll play some ironman football,” West said. “I believe in putting the best 11 on the field.”
Kamryn Pratt, who started in last year’s Coal Bucket game as a freshman, will team up with other linebackers Horatschki, Rodriguez and Andrew Bartzis. Osborn and Willaman are the ends, but West is letting the tackles sort themselves out.
“We have four guys who are handling each other,” he said, referring to Herrin, Hoskins, Munoz and Roberson.
The coach expects his team to be solid.
“I have high expectations,” said West, who will serve as the defensive coordinator. “We know we have a target on our backs.”
Hughes will be in the secondary at safety. Sliva and Vaughn are the cornerbacks.
The offensive play calling will be under the direction of Jay Willaman.