Nobody lit up the scoreboard last season like Muskegon. The Big Reds set a school record for points in a season with 681 on their way to the Division 3 championship game before losing by just one point on a last second TD pass.
The 2017 team will have to replace several impact players on both sides of the ball, like do-it-all play maker Kalil Pimpleton and linebacker Andrew Ward on defense. While that seems like a tough task, the team returns more talent than most, especially on the offensive line. Three starters return up front, including Penn State commit Antwan Reed.
"Last years team, we kind of knew our identity," said head coach Shane Fairfield. "Now there's some new faces in those roles, there's returning faces who'll have to assume some leadership roles. We're still searching. I don't know what we'll be like until we start hitting people and they start hitting us back."
The Big Reds are also trying to clear a mental hurdle. Muskegon has made it to the state championship game in 4 of the past 5 years but fell short each time. While they regained the OK Black crown last season they want to get back to Ford Field and finish the deal and Fairfield says they've got the experience to do it.
"I think we'll be able to run the ball more inside and let our perimeter guys mature. It should be the same old thing, hopefully we get after teams and come out on the winning side more than our opponents do."