DARLINGTON – Darlington fell short of its expectations last year, but now the Falcons have a new coach and something to prove.
The Falcons appeared to be loaded last football season, but they stumbled down the stretch and missed the playoffs. In spite of that, previous coach Will Lampkin made some positive strides during his tenure, and new coach John Jones hopes to continue building.
The Falcons have just five returning starters, so he won’t have much experience to work with, but he likes his team’s attitude.
“The biggest strength of our football team is we’ve got a bunch of young men who get along real well together and work real well together,” Jones said.
And many of the Falcons, especially the seniors, are motivated to improve following last year’s shortcomings.
“We didn’t even make the playoffs last year,” quarterback Frankie Johnson said. “Our senior year is our last ride. We all want to make the playoffs. We’re like a team full of brothers with the same goal.”
Johnson moved from defensive back to quarterback during the offseason and will play a big role in the Falcons success. A star point guard on Darlington’s basketball team, he’s fast and athletic and knows embraces the leadership that comes with the position.
He’ll also have a talented target in Darius Green, who becomes the top target after taking a step forward last year.
“We feel like people are sleeping on us,” Green said. “We just want to work on more, show them we’ve got some talent.”
LAST YEAR: 5-5, 1-4 Region 6-3A
RETURNING STARTERS: 4 offense, 1 defense
KEY PLAYERS: QB Frankie Johnson, WR Darius Green
OPENER: Aug. 21 vs. Carolina Forest