JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - For the second straight season, Westside will welcome in a different head coach than a previous season.
Bobby Engle moves up from his position as junior high head coach to take the reigns of the Warrior football program after Wayne Mayer resigned in December after just one season.
Overall, Engle has been with the Warriors program in some capacity for the past three seasons, which he feels gives him an advantage taking over the helm. "As an assistant you see some different things that maybe the head coach doesn't see," said Engle, "As an assistant coming in I kind of had a visualization of what I wanted to get these guys to do."
The players seemed to be taking comfort in the fact they have a familiar face to lead their charge into the season. "It's been a lot better," said Warriors Senior Guard Terry Kibby, "Last year we weren't as disciplined, this year it's picked up."
Engle's squad practiced in the rain on Wednesday, giving the players a break from the heat they've experienced the first few days of Fall camp. "It was one of the better days weather wise, it was a lot cooler," said Kibby.
The Warriors are coming off of consecutive playoff appearances and hope to continue to build off of that success they've tasted the last few years. "Once we build on that and keep up that tradition, the players will come," Engle added.
This season, Westside and Coach Engle will be forced to battle a slight numbers problem, they don't have a large number of players out this season. "With the numbers being down, you don't have the depth you usually would," Engle said after Wednesday's practice, "We have to condition. We know we have to be in shape and we are going to have play both ways."
Engle said that he feels players will come with the more success his team will have and his long term plan is to grow the program in numbers, but low numbers isn't shaking the confidence of the team. "I like the coach," said Senior Quoshon Gillespie, "They've really been pushing us and giving us a visualization of what we want to do."
Westside was 5-6 in 2014 and made the playoffs but lost in the first round to Shiloh Christian.
The Warriors will open the 2015 slate against Manila.