Updated Fri, Aug 9, 2013 10:30 am
Editor’s Note: Three-Point Stance is Gridiron Glory’s written preview series leading up to its 15th season on WOUB. Gridiron is visiting training camps for all 32 teams in the coverage area as they prepare for the 2013 football season. The series continues in the MVL, where competition is always high from top to bottom.
When it was all said and done, the Sheridan Generals’ 2012 season fell short of the expectations of many around the MVL. After a one-loss regular season and a playoff appearance in the season prior, Sheridan stumbled, losing six straight games after winning its first four. A Jekyll and Hyde season like that leaves a lot of room to improve in summer training camp and the Generals are preparing to contend for the top spot in the MVL.
Here are three things to know about the 2013 Sheridan Generals:
1. Bolstering the Line
In the midst of Sheridan’s six-game losing streak in 2012, the Generals only averaged 7.8 PPG. Coach Paul Culver believes that the offensive line is the first and most crucial piece that must improve to collectively improve their offense.
“Last year, our offensive line was not very productive,” Culver says. “This year we’ve got several new people, so that’s probably the hardest group to get coordinated in such a short amount of time.”
Culver also recognized the difficulty in losing a player like Tate Leavitt, a graduated offensive lineman that has moved on to play for the Ohio Bobcats. He said that there are replacements with the same physical stature, but finding another player with Leavitt’s talent is hard to come by.
2. Retooling the Defense
Sheridan’s defense also suffered from a second half collapse, giving up 37.3 PPG in their final six games after surrendering only 9.0 PPG in the first four contests. Coach Culver says that they’re still trying to find out who’s going to step up on the defensive side of the ball.
“You’ve got guys that look like Tarzan but hit like Jane,” Culver says. “We need to improve in many areas on that side of the ball.”
3. Work Hard, Play Hard
The Generals know that they have a lot to work on before the season starts Aug. 30, but Culver just wants his team to put forth more effort than it did last season.
“We need to play until the whistle blows,” Culver said. “We had people last year who took plays off, and I don’t think we played as hard as we could. In every situation, we’re going to show up and play hard.”
Sheridan will look to create momentum at the start of the season that will lead them to success against challenging teams like Tri-Valley and Maysville that appear later on in their schedule. With a Hall of Fame coach at the helm, Sheridan will always be a team that opponents never take lightly.
The Sheridan Generals begin their 2013 campaign on the road at Lakewood High School in Hebron, Ohio, Aug. 30.
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