FFN Countdown Day 17: Pea Ridge Blackhawks
Coach: Tony Travis
2012: 10-2, 6-1
Returning Starters: 0 OFF/1 DEF
Sept. 6 at Elkins
Sept. 13 at Green Forest
Sept. 20 Greenland
Sept. 27 at Gravette
Oct. 4 Lincoln
Oct. 11 Gentry
Oct. 18 at Ozark
Oct. 25 at Prairie Grove
Nov. 1 Farmington
Nov. 8 Berryville
The Pea Ridge Blackhawks won more games in 2012 than the previous four years combined. Quarterback Austin Easterling and running back Dayton Winn accounted for a majority of the offense. Now Pea Ridge has to figure out how to replace them.
“You can tell by the preseason rankings a lot of people thought that was a one and done year,” said head coach Tony Travis.
With only one starter returning, Pea Ridge is picked to finish 6th in the 4A-1. But instead of moping around, they’re using it as a stepping stone for the future.
“They set the bar for Blackhawk football and we’re trying to raise it every year,” said senior wide receiver Jack Rapp. “So we’re coming out here every day at practice doing our best.”
“We have 62 guys on the roster,” said Travis. “Everybody is fighting to fill those spots. They want to be that guy out there Friday night making those plays.”
This team won’t have the offensive firepower it used to have. But with almost every position up for grabs, that provides a lot of depth for a team hungry to make a name for itself and not be known as the guys who won 10 games last year.
“Like a tradition, a new way to play Blackhawk football and just keep it going,” said senior linebacker Will Klein. “We don’t want it to look like a fluke, and everybody think it was just because we had a whole bunch of returning seniors.”
This group of seniors will do all they can to make this their own team.