GHS’s quot;Replacement Killersquot; for 2000
Goshen may have lost the entire offensive line from last season to graduation, but don’t tell it to the new guys.
"Our offensive line is going to be really good this year," said senior center Barry Jones. "Just about the entire line are seniors, except Cedric Bean. He’s a junior. But most of us have played together since we were junior varsity."
Coming into spring practice, Eagles head coach Joe Thornton had the linemen. It was just that many of them were raw and untested. But during spring training, the Goshen linemen proved they were more then capable of doing the job and should even flourish under new line coach Dennis Truitt.
"I’m not worried about the offensive line," said junior quarterback Quez Burden. "They improved plenty during the spring. They got stronger and they worked on their technique."
Another player who has confidence in the new offensive line is junior tailback Dee Brundidge. Brundidge said he feels the line has "gelled" as a unit, which is an important thing since many of them have never worked together on the field at the same time.
"All they have to do is work as a team," he said. "They’ve just got to come out and do their job. Everything else will fall into place."
Brundidge fell short of the 1000-yard mark last season, but this year Jones and the rest of the line are ready to take care of some unfinished business.
"Dee’s going to hit that line and bust it wide open," said Jones. "He can get his 1000-yards this year. There’s no doubt."
Brundidge said 1000-yards is a goal of his, but more importantly it’s a goal his teammates would like to see him reach.
"I can’t do it without my team," he said.
Highland Home, which is in the Eagles region, made it as far as the third round of the Class 2-A playoffs last year. Many feel this could be the season for the Flying Squadron to take a few extra hits in the loss column.
But Dan Garner, who saw playing time at linebacker last season but has moved to the offensive line this year, doesn’t feel that way.
"They’ll have eight games behind them by the time they play us," he said. "So they’ll be a lot better."
Jones, however, said he is looking forward to the second game of the year. A game that doesn’t matter as far as regional play goes, but one which matters plenty to the people of Goshen.
"I’m ready for Luverne," he said. "We haven’t beat them in a long time and we want them in a bad way this year. It seems like they are always able to beat us, even when our team is just as good or better."