FFN Countdown Day 14: Mansfield Tigers

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Coach: Brandon Elmore
Conference: 3A-4
2012: 4-6, 2-5
Returning Starters: 8 OFF/4 DEF

2013 Schedule
Sept. 6    at Waldron
Sept. 13  Greenland
Sept. 20  at Mena
Sept. 27  Paris
Oct. 4      Lamar
Oct. 11    at Danville
Oct. 18    at Atkins
Oct. 25    Cedarville
Nov. 1      Lavaca
Nov. 8      at Charleston

Mansfield’s offseason was anything but normal.

Former head coach Jason Gill left midway through the summer to take a junior high job at Greenwood. That left the door open for Brandon Elmore to be hired from within.

The season is just a few weeks away and the first year head coach is adjusting to life in charge.

“Been pretty fast paced at first but it doesn’t take long to get in a groove, get in a pattern, weekly routine. It’s been good,” Elmore said.

The Tigers were in the thick of the 3A-4 title hunt from 2008-10 but back to back seasons of five wins or fewer has Mansfield looking to get back on track.

“Just getting our heads together playing as a team,” senior lineman Tyler Elmore said. “We didn’t really play as a team last year. We just need to pull our heads together and work together.”

“I think the key for our football team is just rising to our potential,” the Tigers coach added. “Getting good effort every day, every single play and not taking any plays off.”

Mansfield will run a new Pro-I style offense and have plenty of options at running back after it’s leading rusher graduated.

Kolt Johnson will anchor the defense at middle linebacker and is a definite force in the run game.

“I think we have to be able to hit hard,” Johnson said. “You can mess some people up just by hitting them hard.”

Mansfield will kick off the 2013 season at Waldron on Sept. 6