NEWARK, AR (KAIT) - On a muggy Thursday in the hills of Newark, the Cedar Ridge Football team worked on passing and catching drills on their make-shift practice field.
The Timberwolves are working in the grassy area next to where their former practice area was because they are in the process of building a new field on that location.
Aside from the new practice area, the new sight from Cedar Ridge fall practice was seeing a quarterback throw a football. A typical Wing-T offensive squad, the T-Wolves rarely threw the football, relying heavily on the run. This season, however, you'll see some air from the blue and orange. "We're going to throw the ball a little bit more this year," said Head Coach Danny Brustrom, "We're still going to run our Wing-T stuff but we are going to pass the ball a little bit more this year."
Brustrom attributed the change in strategy to having more depth on this year's team. The T-Wolves have around 36 players out for football this season which has allowed Cedar Ridge to add a few coaches to the staff. It also helps the team expand their offense. "We've got about ten sophomores that have moved up and are skilled kids that are really good," Brustrom told Region 8 Sports.
Now that the team is throwing, this puts added emphasis on the person taking the snaps. "We haven't had it in the past few years," said Senior Quarterback Zack Powell, "We're going to work on it a little bit putting it in."
The upper-classmen have taken note of the young players that are making waves in the young program. "We've got some kids that can catch the ball this year" said Senior Tight End Tyler Batson, "Our quarterback can throw it. I think we're going to be able to throw the ball a lot more this year."
The Timberwolves were 2-8 in 2014 but have shown signs of improvement from year to year under Brustrom. He said getting the numbers up is an accomplishment of one of the goals he's had set. "Just the numbers show that," said Brustrom, "If we can keep those numbers coming back every year, our goal was to get to 40 and we almost got to 40 so maybe next year we'll get there."
Cedar Ridge opens the new season against Brookland.