Post by KY Crusader 75 on Aug 21, 2019 11:46:57 GMT -5
Agree-this is a deep bench as far as quality RB's (assumes Forest is good) are concerned. Last year our #4 back. Bruno, had only 14 carries. If we had multiple injuries we could always move Abrams back to RB and we likely have others on the roster who could fill in as well.
Post by thecrossisback on Aug 24, 2019 21:15:16 GMT -5
WORCESTER — The Holy Cross football team opens its second season under Bob Chesney on Saturday at Navy, and it is evident the Crusaders — young and veteran — are taking on the personality, preparedness and fearless approach of their coach.
“Our blood level is definitely pumping,” senior defensive lineman Mark Ebo said after a recent practice. “We’re out here every day getting better. We can tell we’re getting better. Our offense and defense are going head-to-head at it, and our special teams is getting better day by day as well. We feel confident in each other. We’re ready to go.”
The Crusaders finished 2018 on a four-game winning streak, took the momentum into the offseason, and it continued during training camp.
“We understand this is a different team,” senior running back Domenic Cozier of Milford said, “but older guys are stepping up, younger guys are stepping up. Our confidence is building.”
Cozier, a first-team All-Patriot League selection last year, along with senior offensive linemen Brett Boddy and Brian Foley, lead an experienced offense — seven starters return — but the Crusaders will be breaking in a new starting quarterback.
After a competitive camp battle among senior Emmett Clifford, who started three games last year before being displaced by Geoff Wade, junior Connor Degenhardt, junior Matt Considine, a transfer from Wake Forest, and freshman Chris Butash, Degenhardt is at the top of the team’s first two-deep of the season.
“He has great knowledge of the offense, and he looks really different physically now from what he looked like in spring,” Chesney said. “We certainly like the way he looks.”
Last year, the Crusaders ranked third in the PL in scoring defense, yielding 26 points per game, and suffered major losses up front with the graduation of players like linebacker Ryan Brady, the team’s leading tackler a year ago, and playmaking lineman Teddy Capsis.
Four starters, including Ebo, return on that side of the ball, and the Crusaders have playmakers in the secondary in seniors Chris Riley, who led the team in interceptions in 2018, and Alex Johnson, and junior Joe Lang.
“It’s really competitive,” Chesney said. “Offensively, we’re starting to put ball in end zone a lot, and defensively, we’re getting some interceptions and turnovers. It’s really fun to watch the back and forth that’s going on right now. It’s not lopsided in any way, shape or form, and I think a lot of these guys have something to be excited about.”
Special teams should again be solid. Last season, Holy Cross set a program record by blocking six punts, four of which were returned for touchdowns, and placekicker Derek Ng had a solid freshman year, making 6 of 9 field goal tries, including the winner in overtime against Yale, and was 32 of 33 on PATs. Senior Jon Jon Roberts is pegged to be the starting kick and punt returner.
In 2018, HC faced Boston College for the first time since 1986 and played its most difficult schedule in years. This season’s slate, which includes games against two Football Bowl Subdivision opponents (Navy, Syracuse), is even more challenging.
“Navy is a different atmosphere with the Midshipmen on the side, and that place will be pretty packed,” Chesney said. “It will be an exciting place to go. I feel like our guys having that opportunity to play at BC, if they didn’t have that opportunity before, I’d be worried about going into Navy and certainly going into Syracuse because that will be different than Navy or BC. We’ve been there (against an FBS opponent) before, so I think that’s what makes it good.”
After a strong finish to 2018, and a productive offseason and camp, the Crusaders are confident heading into 2019.
“On both sides of the ball, guys have been in the system for a year and a half now, and they’re understanding the depths of it,” Chesney said. “I think we’re doing a good job on both sides of the ball teaching the why and the progression of it; we’re not just installing an offense or a defense. I’m starting to see their deeper knowledge of it now, which is kind of exciting.”