WHEN the Jefferson football team lines up this fall, it will do so with almost an entirely new offensive line and a host of new running backs carrying the ball behind them.
So the Dragons, who went 10-3 a year ago, are using this spring to start sorting it all out.
“The offensive line and running backs are going to be new,” said second-year coach Ben Hall, whose team was scheduled to wrap-up spring practice today. “But I feel good about the young talent that we have coming in.”
Jefferson graduated four starters off last year’s offensive line that helped the Dragons win the 2012 state title and advance to the state quarterfinals in 2013. A number of linemen are in the mix this spring as the Dragons try to fill those holes. Hall pointed to the efforts of players such as Jackson Bowen, Alex Corbett, Zach Bowman, Zach Barber, Caleb Chandler, Will Norman, Chazz Tillman and Dontae Wilson.
“They’ve shown some ability and a great attitude and they realize there’s competition there,” Hall said.
While this group doesn’t have the experience of last year’s offensive line, it perhaps has more depth, according to Hall.
“We are probably deeper in regards to players than can contribute than in the past on the offensive line,” he said.
Meanwhile, in the backfield, Cole Stancil, Trent Sorrells, Rodney Carr and Zach Boobas are all getting carries as the Dragons search for replacements for both Isaiah Blake and Tristen Jackson. Hall said the Dragons may employee a running-back-by-committee this year at tailback.
“We feel good about the ones we have back there,” Hall said. “Right now, we don’t have workhorse that will get 15-20 carries a game.”
Though his team has plenty of spots to fill, Hall said he’s pleased with how the spring has progressed.
“Everything is rolling along,” Hall said. “We’ve got an opportunity to spend a lot of time with younger players and evaluate incoming freshmen and it’s been successful.”
Jefferson begins its summer football program next week.