Written by Zack Kellogg
The Ridgevue Warhawks are entering their fifth season since the school’s founding and are still looking to find the breakthrough season to put themselves on notice in the 4A Southern Idaho Conference.
The Warhawks have yet to win more than three games in a season thus far, but with the addition of new coaches and playmakers, Ridgevue could make some noise in 2020.
Head coach Tom DeWitz is coming into the season knowing big areas of production from last season were lost to graduation, including two first-team all-conference receivers in Connor Lewis and John Bataluna. Lewis and Bataluna, along with former wide receiver Quinn Rodriguez, accumulated over 2,000 receiving yards and were a primary focus of the game plan.
“We lost our three leading receivers, our leading rusher, and our quarterback to graduation, so we have plenty of new talent to develop. The offensive coaching staff has been shuffled and the ability of the staff to mesh with the fresh talent will be important,” DeWitz said. “Junior Cole McDonald steps in at quarterback and his ability to lead the offense will be a big key to success. He is a solid athlete who can throw and run, more importantly, he is smart and a student of the game with good leadership skills.”
DeWitz said Menchaca, despite currently being in the battle for running back, could be shifted over to receiver as a secondary position to give much-needed weapons on the outside for the first-year starter at quarterback. But this change could come after the first few games in the season, with time most likely needing time to grow and expand.
“We hope to be diverse and balanced on offense but I think the passing game will need some time to develop so we might be run-heavy early in the season,” DeWitz said. “Changes to our offensive scheme are not huge but player personnel and coaching staff changes are significant.”
Zach McGee is the newest addition to the coaching staff, being the former head coach of Caldwell High School for six seasons prior to his resignation in 2017. DeWitz said McGee brings experience in developing and coaching all aspects of the game, along with having a lot of “juice” and enthusiasm to the team culture. McGee will primarily work with the offensive line but will be helping first-year offensive coordinator Ryan Andreason as well.
Check back with IdahoSports.com for updated Warhawk scores and schedules throughout the season.