Pigskin Preview: North Platte Bulldogs

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NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (KNOP)--- North Platte High School has about 100 guys out for football this year.
But in the off-season, the team worked out at Peru to get closer as a squad and workout possible miscommunications on the field.

NPHS head football coach Todd Rice said, "I hope we're a little bit more balanced than we were last year. But we're still working on developing that physical identity that we need with our offense. Then just being more sound defensively. I think just the physicality with it. You know we're a year into our strength program too and so you know hopefully we start seeing some of that come around."

When coach Rice joined the team last year, he made strength training a priority; trying to get athletes working harder in the weight room.

"We worked really hard this off season, you know in the winter and this summer, so I'm really looking forward to translating that to this fall," said senior receiver and safety Ryan Farley.

Senior quarterback Dalton Caley said, "Not only does it kind of change you physically but mentally. You get kids that come here at 6 am every morning, their mentality's going to change. It changes a person more than just physically, I think and it makes us a lot more disciplined."

The Bulldogs have only one full time offensive starter back this year.

"We lost a big senior class last year, we had 20 seniors so we have a lot of inexperience on offense, a number of guys that had experience on our defense, especially defensive line," said coach Rice.

"We do have a lot of speed on the edge, you know we have a big running back, Eli Purdy, and we got a returning starter Dalton and then me and another guy in the slot so I think we'll be really good returning," said Caley.

This year guys are working on holding their teammates more accountable.

Senior center, Logan Penner said, "I think we can beat everyone that's on our schedule. So I think just working hard and playing till the end."

"Just like keeping our heads up when things go down. We struggled with that really tough last year. I mean I remember against Fremont and we were up 9-0 and we just, it got to us and everything went south from there," said Caley.

Farley said, "Just finishing out games, you know there was a lot of times we did very well in the first half and then kind of lost our momentum towards the end of the game."

North Platte 2019 Schedule:
Date Opponent
08/30/19 @ Scottsbluff B
09/06/19 Columbus A
09/13/19 Fremont A
09/20/19 @ Grand Island A
09/27/19 @ Lincoln Southwest A
10/04/19 Lincoln High A
10/11/19 @ Lincoln North Star A
10/18/19 @ Omaha Benson A
10/25/19 Kearney A