When Gregg Webb accepted the Truman head coaching job prior to the 2013 season, he quickly realized that changing the mental makeup within the program needed to be his top priority.
As he begins his second year with the Patriots, that process is still in the works.
“We have some good kids, but the biggest issue we’ve had is the mind-set that we aren’t good, we’ll never be good and nobody cares,’” Webb said. “We have to get them to care enough to play hard.”
The results on the field left something to be desired, too. Truman finished 0-10 last season.
But there are a few reasons for hope. The team had a full offseason to better learn Webb’s run-first offense, which is built on a tough, physically demanding style of play.
Webb says the team still needs to get stronger, but he’s seen signs of a more aggressive team — especially with the defense.
“We couldn’t stop anybody (last year), but I think we have a chance to be better,” Webb said. “Our defensive line has to be more physical and help our linebackers by covering up the offensive line.”
That defensive line will be led by senior Nathan Engle, who will also play on the offensive line. He is one of three returning starters on defense and one of six for the offense.
The Patriots offense features junior quarterback Dean Clemons and running back Jordan Salima, both of whom started last season.
The offensive line welcomes back three starters: Engle, Frank Baker and Alex Fogliani.