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The new guard is in at Edgewood as long-time assistant and former player Scott Clemmons takes over the program. He is the third head coach in the last three seasons as the Cougars seemed to have lost some of their identity and desire to be great on the field during the past couple of campaigns.
He was the perfect hire for the school. No one is more committed or a bigger believer in the mission of Edgewood football than Clemmons.
We caught up with the area’s newest head coach to get his take on what’s in store for him:
TSF: The past three seasons Edgewood has not had a winning campaign after a run that saw the Cougars go at least three games over .500 for 13 consecutive years (10 of those season’s were six games or more over .500), what will it take to get back to/restore that level of the program?
Clemmons: We have to get back to the basics and fundamentals. We have to get mentally tough. Most of our league losses were only a touchdown or field goal so we are in games we just have to learn how to finish and play 48 minutes. Weight room has been great this off season the boys are working hard as individual and as a team. We will have 25-28 seniors on the roster this year and they have to be leaders and demand more of themselves and their teammates to get this turned around. We have to be more productive on the offensive side of the ball. As coaches we have to demand more of the players and of ourselves. We have to re-evaluate all parts of the program. How the players act at school, in the community, on the practice field, in the weight room, and game night. We have to learn how to be winners again on and off the field. When you get knocked down you have two choices; stay down or get up swinging. We are choosing to get up swinging and we will see how the cards fall after each game.
TSF: You are an alum, a teacher and now head football coach at Edgewood, why stay here? What makes the community so special to you?
Clemmons: I think this is the greatest school district in the state. We are a district that cares about all the students and we want the best for all of them. This is the same for the sports teams. We have a booster group and an AD (John Thomas) that cares a great deal for all the sports teams and they make sure we have all we need on and off the field to be successful. This community loves sports and we have such a great following. Parents are always around asking to help out and we have a strong alumni base that are always around rooting us on and willing to help out. This place is special to me because it has giving me so much throughout my life. I wouldn’t be who I am or where I’m at if it wasn’t for this school district and community. My brother and I are graduates, my wife, sister in-law and two brother in-laws are graduate so this is who we are. We are Cougars and we bleed blue each and every day!
TSF: The 2012 Cougars offense, who do you like and how do you plan on turning things up a notch from a group that averaged just 18 points per contest?
Clemmons: We have to control the clock and become more of a ball controlled offense. We have to put more points on the board. The goal going into the season is to have at least 60 offensive plays per game. We have to take care of the ball and cut down on penalties. We have to win field position game. We have to open up the passing game more. When I say more I mean we have to be more efficient with are passing game and be willing the throw the ball on 1st down. The offensive staff is on the same page this year and Greg Brown the Offensive Coordinator has a lot of passion and will demand a lot out of this unit and the offensive coaches. Nobody is going to get a free ride just because they played offense last year. Every position is up for grabs.
TSF: Your defense gave up less than 21 points per game and forced 22 turnovers with 22.5 sacks a year ago. What needs to happen for this team to improve on those numbers?
Clemmons: I think we are pretty good defensively and have been the last couple of years. We have been at the top of the league defensively over the last three years. Offensively we have put the defense in bad situation over the last couple of year and we won’t do that this year. I like how we play defense; fast and physical. Jason Heflin, Defensive Coordinator and the entire defensive staff does a great job breaking down film and preparing the defense each and every week. We lost a lot defensively last year (6 starts) so this unit has some holes to fill but we had a lot of young hunger players who are ready to step in and prove what they have to keep this unit going.
Greg is a co-founder of TSF and is now entering his ninth season as a Featured Analyst for the website. The Xavier University grad also serves as the Content Manager for the website and is widely considered one of the top high school football experts in the region. If you are interested in covering your team, please CONTACT US.