Central High ready for move to 11-man
Ten area schools have hired new football coaches to lead their teams, which means big changes are in motion this fall. But one school who didn't switch skippers Central High might be facing the biggest change of all.
The Bronchos, for the first time in school history, are moving from 8-man to 11-man football.
Now in his second stint as head coach at the school, Keith Burton has spent a total of nine years leading the Central High program. But no wrinkle he's ever put in the Broncho playbook compares to this sort of transition.
"Defensively, being able to get lined up to the different formations you see. Being able to recognize formations, getting the guys lined up to them is something we've really emphasized," Burton said of the obstacles of changing to 11-man. "Offensively, the most challenging part is the blocking schemes. It's a big change."
Luckily, Central High returns a slew of experience on the offensive line. Seth Mewhirter (senior tackle), Cole Edens (senior tackle), Tristan Smith (senior guard) and Sean Edens (junior center) have shown ability to make correct adjustments. Three other players are competing for the other guard position.
While acknowledging the difficulties of what lies ahead, Burton said players have embraced the challenge, which also includes a move into a district with three of the best Class A teams in the state Ringling, Velma-Alma and Empire.