FRANKLIN FURNACE — With an increase in team numbers, a returning group that saw valuable varsity experience a season ago, and a full offseason, second-year Green coach Chad Coffman feels confident in the direction of his program.
The Bobcats’ 30-man roster entering the 2021 season is comprised of six seniors and eight players each in their junior, sophomore, and freshmen classes.
“This time around has felt a lot more like you’d want, like a normal situation,” Coffman said, at Bobcat media day. “We were able to get into the weight room, have our younger guys in there to work and invest. We had a normal summer where we’re seeing them more consistently.”
Green completed its’ season a year ago with a 40-14 win over Federal Hocking. That win, Coffman believes, was weeks in the making as a byproduct of their improvements shown through the back-half of their schedule.
“Those kids toughed it out, worked hard in practice and those last couple of weeks we were a totally different team. We were a lot more competitive, put people in third downs. You have to take those stepping stones — you have to compete to then give yourself a chance to win,” he said.
The position Coffman feels their competition is increasingly strong at is their offensive line.
Senior tackle Ethan Hayslip, junior tackle Daylan Mollett, sophomore center Braxton Conschafsky, and junior guard Chais Lavender will comprise the Bobcats up-front with others on the roster competing for their fifth guard position.
“Braxton Conschafsky at center was a difference for us last year. We moved him to center as a freshman and we instantly got better on offense,” Coffman said. “We’ve got a lot of competition down there and that’s a positive for us. We’ve got Hayslip at tackle, but he’s played everywhere as a four-year starter. He’s a strong kid and he’s in the best shape I’ve seen him.”
Green returns quarterback Derek Salyers who started most of their games at the position as a freshman a season ago.
“I see improvement from him everyday. He gained the experience last year and since then he’s been doing the right things.”
As of the preseason, the Bobcats have seven different players at the running back position, including juniors Landan Lodwick and Nathaniel Brannigan.
“I think we’re going to let running back be decided on the field, which is a good thing and opposite of where we were last year,” Coffman said.
Green is expecting to play their non-league home games at nearby Ed Miller Stadium while the construction of their new athletic complexes is expected to be completed sometime in October.
Coffman is making sure his players — present and future — take advantage of the work that’s being done for them and their program by the Franklin Furnace community.
“Everyday we walk at the locker room we want our guys to look at the work that’s being done. I’ve been at places where we’ve been really successful and none of them have had what we will. It motivates our team and as a coaching staff it motivates us to have our community dedicated to us.”
Reach Jacob Smith at (740) 370-0713 ext. 1930, by email at [email protected], or on Twitter @JacobSmithPDT © 2021 Portsmouth Daily Times, all rights reservedReach