Germantown Warhawks football preview

New coach Jake Davis makes sure it's about the players at Germantown

Aug. 14, 2011

Germantown - New football coach Jake Davis knows what it's like to be the center of attention having earned NOW All-Suburban honors at that very position for powerhouse Homestead teams earlier this century.

But as he prepares to take over for Warhawks legend Phil Datka, who retired last fall after 40-some years at the helm, he wants to make sure that the focus is on the players and not himself.

"We took care of a lot of that (getting to know each other) at our five contact days this summer," said Davis. "We met with the guys and we're making sure that this goes as seamlessly as possible. It's just a little different approach.

"No big deal. It's not about me. It's about them and they're doing everything that we're asking."

Davis, who spent three years on the staff working primarily with the offensive line, inherits a team that will be long on speed but a bit short on size and experience up front.

The offense will rely on skilled seniors such as quarterback Josh Mongan, running back Alec Richmond (703 yards rushing and 11 TDs in 2010) and wide receivers Louis Tuszynski (23 catches, 314 yards) and Ben Holcomb. They will be working behind a whole new offensive line that will include a solid core of three individuals, who range in size from 220-235 pounds. They include senior Matt Van Gompel and juniors Ryan Lemke and Bob Stemm.

"Actually, this is the most balanced size that we've had since I've been here," Davis said.

On the defensive side, there's a little more experience up front including senior nose tackle Nick Fretchel, senior James Hauser and junior Joe Kretlow. Davis said that Hauser, who will also double as a fullback, had a sensational camp.

Senior Dan Olson had a great season last year at middle linebacker and is back for more this fall, and junior Tyler Baran is a small, but feisty linebacker and will also help out at running back.

The senior Holcomb is a three-year starter and was an all-conference selection last season in the secondary. He had a great spring making state finals in track in the high hurdles.

One thing that Davis has been heartened by is that the vast majority of Datka's coaching staff has decided to stay on.

"And what's really nice is that nine of us (on staff) are all in the building," Davis said. "It's important for the kids to see us everyday."

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