By Mulvane’s standards, 2013 was well-below the Wildcat threshold of success. Although they extended their run of four consecutive playoff appearances, head coach Dave Fennewald’s team views a 6-5 season as just squeaking by.
COACH DAVE FENNEWALD: 23 years at the top Wildcat. He’s compiled an impressive 121-95 record as the head coach at Mulvane.
2013 REWIND: It started and stopped--often on a dime--with All-State tailback Michael Mason. He racked up more than 2,000 yards and nearly 30 TD’s his senior year. Unfortunately for Mulvane, his career has shifted to Butler Community College. Much of the tailbacks success was due to offensive lineman Isaiah Evans. Both are gone in 2014.
2014 DISTRICT: Mulvane, Rose Hill, Wellington, Ulysses
RETURNING STARTERS: 6 defense, 3 offense
KEY RETURNING PLAYERS: QB RJ Reiger, OL Tyler Young, OL Brent Martin
Fennewald’s constructed a culture of winning. His program is two years removed from an 11-2 season. His team fell one-game shy of a state championship appearance in 2012. His program has rattled off four consecutive playoff berths.
It’s all built on the big fellas. Mulvane returns two highly touted offensive lineman, Tyler Young and Brent Martin. That could be a lethal combo when combine with returning starter RJ Reiger at quarterback.
Reiger tossed for 9 TD’s, throwing four picks in 2013. But, the gunslinger’s sharpest weapon may be his legs. The junior rushed for nearly 500 yards and 8 touchdowns last season. If he can maintain that performance while showing improvement through the air, overcoming running back Michael Mason’s loss will be easier for the Wildcats.
Defensive should be improved. It needs to be. Mulvane returns a crop of six starters on that side of the ball. They’re a group that allowed 25ppg in 2013. That statistic often-forced their offense to keep pace and wear thin late-in-the-game against more physical opponents.