Thursday, December 11, 2008

Awards banquet caps 2008 football season

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Caldwell County’s football banquet Monday night may have put the cap on the 2008 season, but it’s never too early to look ahead to 2009.

“Obviously we’ve got to replace some skill kids on offense, noted Tiger head coach David Barnes. “But the key thing is we’ve got Nate (Dyer) back at center, Tanner Kilgore is back and Warren Cooper will probably start up front, so we’ve just got to find a couple of linemen.

“In the backfield, Brandon Sigler is back and we’re going to have to find somewhere to play Jaquan (Glover). Tron (Gray) will be back as well. But we’ve got to replace receivers like Eric Faughn, Bryce Boone and John Paul (Boitnott).”

Also graduating is quarterback Will Barnes, which means that spot is open for the first time in three years.

“You’re looking at replacing a quarterback that was here for three years and has been doing this since the sixth grade,” said the Tiger head coach.

Caldwell’s quarterbacking corps took a hit when Barnes announced that freshman Chris Butler was moving away and would not be back next season.

However, sophomore Blake Hodges quarterbacked the squad last summer during 7-on-7 games and returns next year.

“Blake’s very smart. He’s a 4.0 kid,” said Barnes. “Another year in the weight room will make a big difference for him.

“And we’re still going to look at Jacob Freiberger, who’s a freshman with some potential.”

Caldwell may also install some plays out of the increasingly popular “Wildcat” formation or single wing next season, with the direct snap likely going to Sigler.

Tanner Ringstaff, a sophomore, “has good speed” and will likely take over one of the starting receiver spots.

Caldwell’s defense will lose several key players to graduation, including the entire linebacking unit.

“I’m really impressed with some of the younger kids,” said Barnes. “The Boyds (Bryce and Baxter) and Aggie Capps are all going to play next year. We’re really excited about that freshman class.”

Caldwell’s freshman team reached the championship game of its league this fall before losing a close decision to Marshall County.

Barnes expects around 26 freshmen to return for their sophomore seasons in 2009.

“I think we’ll be OK next year,” he noted. “I think a lot of these kids, looking up in the stands on Friday night, understand what football means around here.

“We’ve got to get a lot stronger,” he added. “I always say you make or break your season with how hard you work in the offseason.”

• Former Tiger Tony Franklin was the guest speaker at Monday’s banquet.

Franklin has been an offensive coordinator at two Southeastern Conference schools. He opened the 2008 season at Auburn before being dismissed midway through the campaign.

“I thought Tony did a great job. I was really glad he could come and speak to the kids,” said Barnes.

Franklin still lives in Auburn, Ala. He and Barnes are close friends, and Caldwell runs the Tony Franklin Offense.

“I think it means a lot to the kids. A lot of them went to camp at Troy when Tony was there and Tony worked with them,” said Barnes. “Some of the younger kids may not know him as well, but all of those older kids are familiar with him.”

• The Tigers compiled a 7-4 record in 2008, losing at Owensboro Catholic in the first round of the playoffs.

The senior class is the first at Caldwell to have four straight winning seasons.

Times Leader - Princeton, Kentucky


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