Ferndale finished second in the 3A Wesco North last year and earned its first trip to the state playoffs since 2012, before falling to eventual state runner-up O’Dea in the first round. Here’s a look at what it’s going to take for the Golden Eagles to have a successful campaign in 2017:
Rush to find options
Fortunately, Ferndale returns Cole Semu, who rushed for 1,117 yards and 10 touchdowns last year. But with the graduation of Ben Broselle and Justice Powell, a pair of backs that combined for 2,277 yards and 32 TDs, Ferndale needs to find a couple of backs it can pair with Semu to make the offense really hum, like it did last year.
Play with purpose
Ferndale had a strong group of leaders last year. Fortunately, this year’s leadership crew appears to be stepping in to fill the role, but only time will tell how far it can guide this team. The players came up with the buzz word “purpose” – something intended to inspire collectively and mean something different to each player.
Fly like an Eagle
With a strong three-headed rushing attack last year, Ferndale only needed to pass for 98.8 yards per game. But James Hinson is in his second season starting at quarterback, and coach Jamie Plenkovich said receiver Watiko Leighton had a “great offseason.” Perhaps the Golden Eagles will look to air it out a little more in 2017.