“We feel like we’re really strong up front this year,” defensive coordinator John Emerson said. “Last year we were pretty solid, but there were some places where we had to cover up some holes. I think we’re more solid all-around this year, and especially up front.”
One of the leaders on what Emerson hopes will be an improved defense is senior linebacker Cale Stumpff, who has emerged as a valuable part of the defense and has taken on a leadership role.
“We’re more agile at linebacker this year, which will help,” he said. “Our secondary needs to learn some of the calls, but they’re going to be good once they get it figured out.”
Along the line, Cade Parker will anchor a unit he said plans to “dominate” this season.
“We’re much better than we were last year,” he said. “We’re getting the right people in the right places, and we don’t have to reteach everything from a year ago. It’s just about going out and playing.”
Scrimmages approaching: Full practices began on Monday, and the first preseason scrimmages of the season are quickly approaching.
Both schools will open up the preseason in two weeks, and the Tigers are already gearing up for the Top of the World Classic, a huge annual scrimmage hosted at Harve Collins Field by NHS.
The event is scheduled for Aug. 30, and more than 20 teams will be on hand to take part in the fast-paced, high-intensity event that serves as the final opportunity to prepare before the season opens up with the Crosstown Clash on Sept. 5.
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