DeKALB – When Travis Frederick took over as head coach at Genoa-Kingston in 2011, the Cogs offense revolved almost exclusively around the running game.
However, after another 7-on-7 practice Monday morning, his Cogs showed that they might be a bit more willing to put the ball in the air than in years past.
It’s not because the playbook has been altered. The Wing-T offense will still be in effect, but the receiving corps has certainly changed.
“It’s different just because we have more [receivers],” Frederick said. “We’ve had a couple of nice players the last few years, but it’s just nice having more bodies. It adds to your flexibility.”
As a result, G-K, which finished 3-6, 3-3 in the Big Northern Conference East Division last season, will likely throw the ball a bit more.
Still, G-K’s throwing success won’t depend solely on the new set of receivers. They’ll also need help from the offensive line.
“We’re definitely a lot faster, and we have some athletic kids who can catch and make plays,” receiver Mike Kuhn said, “but we need to have a good line so we can make good throws and have time in the pocket.”
Frederick said that although he’s ready to adapt to fit the new personnel’s strengths, the passing game still will be secondary to grinding out yards with the run.
“We’ll just do what we do,” he said. “We run the ball, and when we need to throw the ball, we’ll throw in play-action and try to pick up some yards there. We’re staying somewhere along the same lines.”
More than anything, these 7-on-7s are ways for Frederick’s team to increase its versatility and work on improving weaknesses. If it can handle adversity in these less-pressurized situations, he hopes that it will carry over into the regular season.
“There are times when things don’t go your way, and you get stuck in third and longs,” he said, “but that’s why you do this 7-on-7 stuff, so you can prepare for those moments.”