FINDLAY, OH (WTOL) - Last year, Findlay made it to the playoffs for the first time since 2011. But after breaking the postseason hiatus, the Trojans lost the majority of their starters to graduation. Now, it's time to reload and fast.
"We're not a team that looks to rebuild over a three-year period or something like that," said Head Coach Mark Ritzler. "We want to win every game, that's why we're here. That's what the kids want to do, that's what the coaches want to do. Again, they are talented and we'll see what happens."
After losing 10 starters, Findlay's defense will have new faces lining up. But senior linebacker Cam Dillon, the sole returning starter, wants to focus on helping this young team get ready for Friday nights.
"Just trying to teach all the young guys what to do, to do their job, and it's been a long process so far and we got awhile to go still, but it's working good so far," Dillon said. "You know, by the time season gets here everybody should pretty much be at the level we were at last year."
While they have experienced guys returning to the offensive line, size is a factor, making skill key.
"I'm about 235 pounds and I'm our second biggest lineman," said Matt Lichtinger, Findlay senior left guard. "So we're going to have to really work on that technique, getting those steps, shooting our arms forward both on the offensive line and the defensive line."
As for what it takes to get back to the playoffs for the second-straight year, Coach Ritzler says his team needs to take care of business early.
"First of it is to get off to a good start," Coach Ritzler said. "Anytime you got a young team or a team with not a lot of experience, if you can gain some positive momentum early on, give them some confidence, usually some good things can happen later on down the road."
"The main key is we have to stay healthy, we have to win the games we know we should win, and then we got to step up big and win the games that are against the tougher opponents," Dillon said.
Findlay opens up their season at home with Hilliard Bradley.