Elkhart Memorial football has something this year it did not have last year — a clear-cut offensive leader.
Aug. 22: Elkhart Central
Aug. 29: Concord
Sept. 5: Goshen
Sept. 12: at Warsaw
Sept. 19: at Plymouth
Sept. 26: South Bend Clay
Oct. 3: at NorthWood
Oct. 10: Wawasee
Oct. 17: at Northridge
Trevor Trowbridge was part of a quarterback duel as a junior, but he enters his senior season as No.1. Crimson Chargers head coach Bill Roggeman likes the continuity already, and he believes the team’s strength and quickness up front has taken significant leaps.
As Memorial heads into the 2014 season opener with rival Elkhart Central on Aug. 22, here are three things to know about the squad:
Sound at Quarterback
"Trowbridge is our quarterback. He’s done an outstanding job of learning the offense, he’s worked hard at his fundamentals, his leadership skills, but the biggest part of his attitude is that he gets what we want to do on offense,” Roggeman said. “He’s very comfortable in it. Now he understands my thought pattern as opposed to just running plays.
"Last year, it was a challenge to get on the field. This year, he’s taken this team to be his.”
"We’ve got a lot of experience on defense, we’ve physically improved ourselves with quickness and strength,” Roggeman said. “They get after it. They have fun playing defense. Last year, it was like, ’OK, I’m on defense.’ This year we’ve got kids like Jeno Peek, Chris Kale and Caleb McDaniel who are ready to move up, kids who’ve made themselves better. That goes back to the offseason, their willingness to put in the time.”
Seniors Stepping Up
"I like the way the senior class is taking ownership and I like the fact that we seem to genuinely care for one another. There’s a good team feeling, a camaraderie that honestly wasn’t there before. These kids do understand what being part of a team means,” Roggeman said. “The X’s and O’s of the game have improved, strength and conditioning have improved, but the most important thing of all is attitude of what it takes to be something that’s bigger than yourself.”
Bill Beck is The Elkhart Truth sports editor. Follow him on Twitter @eTruthsports