Most college football programs entering their second year of on-field play would be pleased with a two-win season and steady progress. But the coaches at Wayland Baptist are aiming even higher.
The Pioneers reported for preseason practice Sunday led by Coach Butch Henderson.
They enjoyed momentary success a year ago finishing 2-8 in NAIA play but fell short late in many games. Henderson said the coaching staff has stepped up the pressure on the players to outlast their opponents.
"I thought we stayed with people right into the third quarter and then late in the third quarter and fourth quarter we'd let it get away from us. So, the real stress we've had in the off season and then now in this preseason work is we have to be able to play four quarters all the way through. If eleven men will do that then you got a chance to win," he said.
Outside of staying focused late in games, Henderson said he's trying to developing team comradery, which takes time to create in a new program. The vast majority of the team are freshmen and sophomores. Even so, players say they are doing their best to stay positive and come together.
"I want us all to grow better as a team. Last year, we had a great year coming out but we don't want crutches. Personally, I think we have the ability and the people and expectations to go as far as we can. We want to win every game and that's how we are going to play as well as how our coaches are coaching us," said Sophomore Running Back Kendall Roberson.
The Pioneers will get a chance to gauge their progress when their season begins September 9th in Alamosa, Colorado against Adams State University.
Copyright 2013 KCBD. All rights reserved.