Indian Football Season Preview: Changes Afoot

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Eric Speelman, Staff Writer

A new school year is here, and that means it’s time for Indian football.

Led by first-year head coach Todd Alexander, the Tribe moves to class 6A with a hole at quarterback after the graduation of three-year starter Bryse Salik. Senior Jordan Fay and junior DJ Hollywood are competing for that spot, with Hollywood seeming to be the favorite for the job, following an early injury to Fay.

On defense, Texas A&M commit Demani Richardson will lead a unit that finished 4th in District 10-5A in points allowed per game and is looking to make some noise.

Schedule-wise, the Indians have landed in a district packed with talent, including DeSoto, Cedar Hill, Grand Prairie, Mansfield, South Grand Prairie, and old foes in Mansfield Lake Ridge and Mansfield Summit. They will also tackle a tough non-district schedule, with games against rival Ennis, in Mesquite against the Mesquite Poteet Pirates, and Flower Mound Marcus.

Senior wide receiver Keshawn Anderson believes that the team is ready.

“It’s just the same as any other season,” Anderson said. “We faced our new challenges in the offseason.”

What remains to be seen is if the Tribe can translate last year’s high-flying offense into success in the slower-paced 6A style of play. Area 6A teams last year averaged 21-25 points per game compared to the Indians’ 36.7 points per game. However, with 6A defenses only allowing around 20 points per game, the Indian unit may find themselves scrambling to shore up holes.

The new-look Indians open the year with the Battle of 287 in Ennis. Kickoff is at 7:30 p.m. on Friday.