Today gave the Sports Fan crew our first look at the Meigs Marauders under David Tennant. A lot was learned about this new-look Meigs team. Here is what a day at practice and talking with some players taught us.
What we already knew
1. Coulter Cleland is the man. Everyone knew that after seeing him throw for almost 2,000 yards this past season. Going into his sophomore campaign, Cleland looks more polished, stronger and taller. Cleland will be able to pass and run through whatever defense is in his way.
2. This team looks totally new. Not in terms of players but in terms of the coaching staff. Tennant brought in a lot of his people and they can all focus on separate parts of the team.
What we found out
1. These players love David Tennant. After practice was over we talked with Coulter Cleland, Weston Baer, Landon Acree and Abe Lundy. All four of them made it clear how much the entire program loved playing under Tennant already. “He is just so positive. He was made to be a high school football coach and that’s what he does,” said Acree. Every player we talked with made it clear they had bought into Tennant’s system.
2. The players have high expectation. Not just for this year but for the future. While the playoffs are the goal of most teams, the dreams go deeper for this Marauder group. “I want to leave this program in a position where they can be good for a long time, like the old day,” Acree said. Their goals are to turn Meigs into a program, not just a one-season wonder.
What we still don’t know
1. Who are the top receivers? Coach Tennant seemed unsure too. With the losses of both Bartrum brothers and Cole Adams, who will be the star receivers. Weston Baer will feature heavily in the offense, but there is no clear number two. It will likely be receivers by committee for the start of the season.
2. Are they ready for Athens and Nelsonville-York? Meigs has been the perennial third-place team in the conference for the past few years. Every year we wait and see if Meigs is ready to take the next step. What makes this team different? Perhaps it is a new coaching staff or a motivated senior class. Regardless, this could be the Meigs program to take the next step.