NOCONA, Texas (TNN) - The Blitz on six preseason previews takes us to Nocona where there is a lot of new things this season.
Rick Weaver took over for Brad Keck and he says work ethic is his big focus early on.
“Our motto is relentless effort this year," Nocona’s first-year head coach Rick Weaver said. "We are going to make mistakes, I’m a first-time head coach and I’ve got a first time defensive coordinator. We’ve got a lot of kids that are first time on varsity, going to get their first snaps. We are going to make mistakes, but if we can give relentless effort, doing everything 1,000 miles an hour, then you can recover from those mistakes.”
Luckily for the first-year head coach that relentless effort and team buy-in is already apparent.
“He likes everybody to be a team, to be one unit,” Nocona senior RB/LB Chandler Fenoglio said. “He likes everybody to be going 100 percent which is good and he likes everybody to be all in.”
“Man they came out yesterday and I didn’t have to yell at them about hustling on the field, about standing in the back not paying attention. They were focused and when we were on the field it was full tilt," coach Weaver said.
The Nocona Indians have been on a strong stretch recently, making the playoffs three years in a row.
One of the reasons they have been able to have some success is that continual leadership from the older players and that won’t change this season.
“For a new coach, since we’ve been here, for us to be a leader is more important than anything because we have to show our coach that we are the leaders of the team," Fenoglio said.
“Because there’s a lot of young kids that we need to take into our leadership," Nocona senior WR Jase Davis said. "So it’s going to be really important to do that.”
In the first year of a new head coach, offenses and defenses are bound to look different, but coach Weaver says he will play to his personnel.
“We’re not going to be very big on the offensive line, but the kids can move, they’ve got good quickness as well," coach Weaver said. "So we might have to throw some screens and run outside, we have to take advantage of what we have.”
“The line is not the biggest in the world but they will buy us time to use mostly our skill kids, that’s where most of our strength is," Davis said.
The Indians could do something special this year, make the playoffs four years in a row for only the second time in school history; the other time was 1942-1945.
But coach Weaver says he’s focused on the building blocks.
“The first year I just want to see us improve every week," coach Weaver said. "Everything is new: special teams, defense, offense, everything is new. So to eliminate mistakes, of course we want to get in the playoffs, but I want to see us improve every week.”
Week 1: F 8/30 vs Boyd 7:30pm
Week 2: F 9/6 @ Venus 7:30pm
Week 3: F 9/13 vs Ponder 7:30 pm
Week 4: F 9/20 @ Valley View 7:30pm
Week 5: F 9/27 vs Gunter 7:30pm
Week 6: F 10/4 @ Henrietta 7:30pm
Week 7: F 10/11 vs Callisburg 7:30pm
Week 8: BYE
Week 9: F 10/25 @ S&S Consolidated 7:30pm
Week 10: F 11/1 vs Holliday 7:30pm
Week 11: F 11/8 @ City View 7:30pm