ARCANUM – The 2016 edition of the Arcanum Trojans football team has a major goal in mind after three straight 5-5 seasons.
Under the direction of fifth-year head coach TJ Powers, the Trojans are “bound and determined to get over the hump this year.”
“The big thing … major point of emphasis is team chemistry between the guys,” Powers said. “We’ve been really trying to be positive. It’s a family atmosphere. We spend a lot of time together. Everybody working together. Tried to focus on giving the extra effort and attention to detail.”
Offensively, Arcanum will be a blend of returning starters and players with some experience looking to make their mark in the upcoming season.
Pierce Lindemuth takes over the controls of the offense this year. The 5-foot 11-inch senior will quarterback the Trojan attack. He has the ability to throw the ball and is a “hard runner, who is like a fullback playing QB.”
Featured running backs will be senior Brandon Kinney, who Powers describes as a “workhorse.” Kinney scored 22 touchdowns last season and rushed for more than 1,000 yards. Junior Daniel Coats completes the tandem of backs who can run either inside or outside and score from anywhere on the field.
The strength of the offense may come from the offensive line, which returns four starters from a season ago. With center Cambell Gostomsky, guards Alex Weiss and Caleb Harter and tackles Brandon Riffell and Maverick Hildebrand, Arcanum has its largest O-line in the Powers era.
Defensively, the Trojans use a 4-4 scheme.
“Simple, react fast, downhill, aggressive,” is the way Coach Powers described his defense philosophy. “Kids play the fastest when they know what they are doing.”
The defensive line is anchored by Gostomsky with Kinney and Coats adding support from the linebacker position. The defensive backfield is a young unit that will be gaining experience as the season progresses.
The Arcanum schedule requires the Trojans to get off to a quick start if they are to contend for a Cross County Conference championship. In weeks two-five they face Covington, Tri-County North, Miami East and Twin Valley South. All have been recent conference contenders and have been playoff teams in recent years.
“If you want to be the best, you have to beat the best,” Coach Powers said.
In addition to Coach Powers beginning his fifth season, he is assisted by defensive coordinator Doug Morris, wide receivers/cornerbacks coach Jared Morris, running backs/safeties coach Josh Whitaker, quarterbacks/outside linebackers coach Theo Whitaker and offensive/defensive line coach Steve Hottle.