The Rockhurst Hawklets may very well stumble through the early portion of their schedule. They're young. They're inexperienced. But if they bounce back and make a postseason run, coach Tony Severino is warning you not to be surprised.
By SAM MCDOWELL
The Kansas City Star
If this story sounds familiar, well, it should.
Rockhurst lost three of its first four games last season before reeling off eight straight victories and reaching the Missouri Class 6 quarterfinals. The Hawklets could be in line for some growing pains once again, considering only four starters return offensively and defensively, and they open with a trip to East St. Louis (Ill.), then play a home game against Bentonville (Ark.) and travel to Blue Springs.
"That's the way we plan it," Severino said. "We'll find out how good we are. We want to see how they handle adversity early, because there's going to be some. We're looking to be there at the end of the year."
A year after rotating four quarterbacks, Severino has named T.J. Green — son of former Chiefs quarterback Trent Green — his early-season starter. That moves last year's primary starter, Ahmad Tyler, to running back and wide receiver. Tyler has experienced shoulder problems, limiting his passing potential.
The Hawklets replace all five offensive linemen.
"Obviously that's a concern, and yet it's fun to watch because the guys who are going to be there are talented and big," Severino said. "We're not quite sure how they're going to handle it when we open the season, but by the end of the year, they'll be really good."
Tight ends Luke Arbanas and Jayke Simsheuser will help pave some running lanes, and they also serve as the team's leading defenders.