BY JEFF FALK
SOUTH LEBANON – Scholastic football groups aren’t teams to be molded, they’re squads to be unfolded. Football doesn’t develop character, it reveals it.
The development of this season’s Cedar Crest Falcons should be interesting, intriguing and fun to follow. Ultimately, the Falcons will be a product of the program, and then come to represent it.
Under current head coach Rob Wildasin, Cedar Crest has made measurable strides, winning as many games in his five years at the helm as the Falcons had in the ten years prior to him taking over. During the Wildasin years, Cedar Crest has gone a combined 27-25 – a total which includes a pair of playoff losses – after going 27-73 during the previous decade.
“Draw whatever conclusion you want,” said Wildasin. “We’re certainly in the mix. I don’t think anyone rolls into Cedar Crest any more and thinks it’s over. We went 5-5 last year, but we were in the mix. Sleep on us at your own risk.
“Twenty players per class has always been my goal,” continued Wildasin. “We’re a small six-A team. I think we’ve done a good job of that. We’re not going to play 22 kids on Friday nights. We’re going to have 45-50 kids hit the field.”
After exhibiting steady progress in Wildasin’s first four years, the Falcons took a bit of a step back last season. That 5-5 mark came on the heels of an 8-2 regular-season mark in 2017, one in which Cedar Crest qualified for the District Three postseason.
“Last year, we had our opportunities to be a little better,” said Wildasin. “We just couldn’t get over the hump. We had injuries at the wrong time. We’re a diiferent team this year. Last year means nothing.
“When you come into camps, you’re always looking at places where guys left,” added Wildasin. “Where you know you have new spots. Obviously for me, this year it’s at quarterback. But that’s where your attention goes to first.”
There will be no quarterback controversy in South Lebanon this season, just some good old-fashioned competition. Following four productive years from the departed Logan Horn, juniors Chris Danz and Dalton Reinhart are currently running neck-and-neck for his vacated starting gig.
It’s a situation that may need some time to work itself out, if at all.
“They’re both in the mix,” said Wildasin. “That’s the best answer I can give you. They’re both capable. I’m in no hurry. I think they both do things well, and they’re both inexperienced. I think they’re a little different in what they bring to the table. I want them to grow into their idea of what a quarterback is.