BEDFORD, MI (WTOL) - The Bedford Mules finished their season with a 9-3 record and made it to the regional rounds of the Michigan playoffs.
But with 17 seniors now gone, there are many holes to fill for Coach Jeff Wood. But he says he has full confidence in his young team.
"These kids come with a lot of experience because they were playing special teams last year, they did a great job backing up those seniors," Coach Wood said. "We have some kids who really respect the system and the whole program. They've been in the weight room since January, so, we feel pretty confident that we can be a very competitive team."
During the off-season, the Mules faced the unthinkable. Jon Scout, one of the Mules most inspiration players, died from brain cancer. This year, Bedford promised to dedicate the season to his memory.
"Jon Scout really meant a lot to our whole team," said Jordan Cooker, Bedford senior captain. "We still say, '1, 2, 3 family, 4, 5, 6 Scout.' So he's still in our hearts and we play for him."
Fueled by emotion and the sting of losing to the eventual state champion last year, Bedford is ready to pick up where they left off.
"Our whole team is doing good in the weight room, it's like one of our best years," Cooker said. "We're getting stronger and better every single day."
"All the seniors this year have the leadership from last year," said Maison Hullibarger, Bedford senior. "I think that's what's going to make us great this year too."
As for who will be filling the pocket, that is a battle between junior Austin Malabanan and sophomore Jacob Ehlert.
The Kicking Mules open their season at home against St. John's Jesuit.