The Colcord Hornets football team is expecting big things in the 2008 season.
Head coach Bud Simmons and his staff will be looking to continue the streak of success that the Hornet program has enjoyed for the past ten seasons. The club has been to the playoffs in nine of those seasons and has racked up an impressive 89-29 record in that time. The team has kept the dust off the trophy case as well earning three district titles, three bi-district titles, and one regional title in that period.
Last season the Hornets wound up with a 6-5 record after qualifying for post season play.
“We were very young in several positions in 2007, starting seven sophomores and freshmen,” said Simmons. “They have gained experience for the up-coming season, so we hope to be competitive in our district.”
Colcord is aligned in the Class 2A-8 district.
“We will have several tough games next year,” said Simmons. “All three of our non-conference games will be tough. Honestly, we hope to be in dogfights in all of our district games because that means we’ll be competitive.
“The Kansas Comets is our cross town rival game,” the coach continued, “but in the past four or five years the Sequoyah-Tahlequah Indians has been a very tough game, with district title and playoff implications.”
The rest of the district line up looks to hold challenges as well.
“Vian is a new district team in 2A-8 and will probably be one of the teams to beat,” said Simmons. “Keys also will be one of the top teams in the district.”
Leading the charge for the Hornets on offense in 2008 will be junior running back Ethan Shelley. The 5’8, 180-pound, returning starter is described as an unselfish team player by Simmons.
“He’s not flashy,” said the coach, “but he gets it done.”
Making his debut as starting quarterback will be sophomore Canaan Sherrell. The 6’0, 175-pounder has been impressive in preseason drills.
“He’s a good leader,” said Simmons, “and has excellent speed and a good throwing arm.”
Opening holes and providing protection on the offensive line will be returning starters Preston Walker and Cory Pickup, both juniors.
Walker, a guard, stands 5’10 and weighs in at 220 pounds. Simmons describes him as a very strong and aggressive player who never gives up.
Tackle Pickup is regarded as the most improved player from 2007 by the coaching staff and has good size at 6’3, 250 pounds.
The Hornet defensive unit is centered around the linebackers. Returning starters Jordan Cowan and Yancy Kincheloe are the anchors there.
Cowan, a junior measuring in at 5’10 and 190 pounds, led the Hornets in tackles last season.
“He’s very aggressive and a good leader,” said Simmons.
Kincheloe was number two in tackles for the Hornets last season. The senior stands 5’10 and checks in at 175 pounds.
The defensive line features returning starters Jim Sixkiller and Clayton Nichols.
Sixkiller, a junior, is listed as 6’0 and weighing 240 pounds.
Nichols, a senior, is noted for his speed in a 6’0, 260-pound package.
Colcord will utilize a spread formation on offense and will line up in an odd stack formation on defense.
The Hornet coaching staff for 2008 numbers nine members. Coach Simmons is joined by assistant head coach Scott Hamby, defensive coordinator Henry James, and general assistants Jeremy Scott, Harold Thomas, Josh Bishop, Kirk McHolland, and Dray McJunkin.