After a winless season a year ago, the Windsor Knights head into the season with a renewed dedication and simple goals to start with.
Head coach Jimmy Watts, who took over during the 2012 season, thinks that the Knights are ready to take small steps toward respectability in the GISA and is excited by the numbers he has showing up for preseason workouts.
“I am pretty confident that all 26 kids we have right now are here to stay,” said Watts, who will unveil a new offense this season. “Realistically, we went into last season and looked at our very difficult schedule. Our first goal obviously is to get a win early in the season to get us going, and we know that winning breeds enthusiasm. Our next goal is to get five wins and after that to be a region contender.
“I think the kids are tired of losing, and I know that the coaches are. We have put in the work to be better, and I think the kids are looking forward to putting the pads on again.”
The Windsor offense will look nothing like it has before. Behind senior quarterback Scott Albert, who transferred from Mount de Sales, the offense will move from the I-formation to being in the shotgun for most of the snaps. As an added bonus, the Knights have returning tight end and all-region pick Dustin Thomas for his senior season, as well as an offensive line that boasts three players who weigh more than 300 pounds, including Tavis Malikius ,and an experienced center in Brennan Thomas.
“We are all excited about the offense, and the team has a different attitude from other years,” Thomas said. “We don’t want to be known around Macon as the team who didn’t win any games, so I think everyone here has dedicated themselves to winning football games this year.
“We are the only team left from Macon in the GISA, and we feel like it’s our time to have a good season.”
Albert, a 6-foot-4 senior, will be a big part of the new offensive scheme.
“I feel like I am ready for it, and I have some great receivers, and I have a big, tall tight end in Dustin that can get open,” Albert said. “We have been working hard since school ended, and we are very comfortable with the offense. We all want to be a part of the class that turns around the football program, and that’s what we intend to do.”
The defense will line up mainly in a 4-4 look and will be led by defensive end William Owenby, linebacker Dylan Moore and cornerback Dylan Bass.
WINDSOR IN 2014
Head coach: Jimmy Watts (1-15 in two seasons overall and at Windsor).
2013 record: 0-10.
2014 region: GISA 4-AA.
Returning starters: 7 on offense; 7 on defense.
Players to watch: Austin Thomas (6-4, 195, Sr., TE/DE); Tavis Malakius (6-1, 305, Jr., G/TD); Josh Brooks (6-1, 170, Jr., RB/OLB); Dylan Moore (6-2, 220, Sr., MLB); Scott Albert (6-3, 185, Sr., QB).
Aug. 22 at Bethlehem Christian
Aug. 29 Holy Sprit
Sept. 5 at Young Americans Christian
Sept. 12 Robert Toombs
Sept. 19 David Emanuel
Sept. 26 at Piedmont
Oct. 3 Griffin Christian
Oct. 10 at Brentwood
Oct. 17 Briarwood
Oct. 24 at Monsignor Donovan