Jared McDaniel became the new head football coach at Wichita Trinity late this summer, but even with little time to prepare, McDaniel has already detected his young talent.
Coach: Jared McDaniel (first year overall)
2011 Recap: 4-5 overall, 4-3 Central Plains League record, 0-3 in district
2012 District: Augusta, Rose Hill, Wichita Collegiate
Offense: Wichita Trinity’s 2011 roster held 43 players and more than half of them were underclassmen. The young returners are assets in the eyes of the recently hired head coach.
“Our strength will be the youth we have on the field that had varsity experience as freshmen,” said Coach McDaniel. “We really had a great team camp. They caught on really well with what we put in.”
With Wilson Alexander graduated, the Knights offense will look to sophomore Matt Jones to lead the team in the quarterback position. Returning offensive threats like sophomore Tyler Burns and senior DJ Green must use their abilities again this season to record the majority of Trinity’s points. Jones and Green combined to produce 1,559 of the teams 1,806 rushing yards last season.
Defense: Green and Burns are a talented duo on defense as well, and with strong protection from junior Alex Ast, sophomore Jake Berdan, and senior Grant Meyerhoff the Knights defense will be resilient.
In the Central Plains League, the Knights will face dominant offenses like that of Conway Springs and Garden Plain. In order to win ball games against the most competitive teams, Trinity must maintain a strong coverage in 2012.
Odds and Ends: In their nine games in 2011, Trinity was outscored 213 to 261, but they were never shut out.
“I feel good about the kids and the situation,” said Coach McDaniel. “Trinity is unlike any other program I’ve been associated with.”
A 0-3 record in district play has left the Knights thirsty for the season opener at the end of this month.
“I expect us to be competitive right out the gate,” said McDaniel.
Leadership from the returning Trinity Knights will be vital all season, but especially in district play with games against Wichita Collegiate and against 4A state champion Rose Hill.