Photo By Wes Turner - #3 Derek Matthews
Written by Meredith Spelbring
The Delco Hornets will look to some key returning athletes and young players to help them once again reach the playoffs 2020 season.
Senior quarterback and linebacker Gabe Mathews will come in for the Hornets after missing a full season to elbow surgery, said Head Coach Josh Stewart.
“He missed last season after having Tommy John’s surgery on his elbow. He has looked great over the summer and he is primed to have a great senior season,” Stewart said.
Also coming on to the varsity squad for the Hornets is offensive assistant John Loper to help develop the team’s new offense, according to Stewart.
In the fall 2020 season, the Hornets will look to take a new approach to the offense.
“We are implementing a new offense this season,” Stewart said. “Our success will be dependent upon our ability to pick it up quickly and to execute. We plan on being physical up front and running the football will still be a staple of what we do at Declo High School.”
Stewart said he hopes to have a more balanced approach on offense, with a bit more tendency to run the ball, but still be able to effectively pass the ball.
“We want to be able to run the football, but we also need an effective passing attack,” he said. “Ideally, we would like to be 60/40 run to pass but realistically we will be closer to 70/30. However, we plan on being efficient and explosive with that 30%.”
Part of implementing the program’s new offensive approach will be upgrading its usual Wing-T offense. While it could look a little different on the field to fans, Stewart said the new offensive model will still have roots in the team’s classic Wing-T style, but with variations on the normal formations and motions.
A critical piece in the new offense’s success will be a strong offensive line.
“It all starts and finishes with the (offensive line),” he said. “We have some good athletes at the skill positions and they will have a big impact, however, we know our success will be determined by how we play at the line of scrimmage.”
Stewart said the key to success on the other side of the ball for the Hornets will be executing “alignment and assignment.”
“The key to our success will be our ability to execute those two factors,” he said. “This is our second season in our defensive system and we are returning several starters from last year’s team.”
After changing up the defensive style in the 2019 season, Stewart said the overall look of the defense will remain the same as the players work on execution.
“We have a bend but don’t break mentality on defense,” he said. “We aren’t going to take a lot of risks because we aren’t willing to give up big plays. We are going to try to force the offense to have to execute long sustained drives in order to score.”
Check back with IdahoSports.com for updated Delco scores and schedules throughout the season.