Head Coach: Craig Elliott
Years as Head Coach: 3rd Season
Previous Experience: 3 Years as Assistant
Record Last Year: 3-5
State Titles: 2004
Coltyn Smith, WR/DL, 12
Adam Akers, QB/LB, 12
Quade Renfro, QB/DB, 12
Mike Farrar, OL/DL, 12
Austin Fry, RB/DB, 11
Ben Howerton, WR/DL, 11
Ethan Smith, OL/LB, 11
Hunter McKee, RB/LB, 11
Calvin Drake, OL/DL, 11
John Gorbet, RB/LB, 10
Caedmon Graham, WR/DB, 10
Derrick Warren, RB/DB, 10
Tyler Barry, OL/DL, 10
Jesse Osorio, OL/DL, 10
Hunter Howerton, RB/DB, 10
Josh Salmonson, OL/DL, 10
Returning Players with Honors:
Coltyn Smith, All-Conference DL
Quade Renfro, All-Conference RB/DB
Mike Farrar, All-Conference OL
Ben Howerton, All-Conference DL
Ethan Smith, All-Conference LB
Key Players lost from last year:
Gavin Miller, QB, three starter and team leader
Blake Foster, WR
Photo By: Steve Conner - #6 Quade Renfro
Written By: Sven Alskog
A pretty common sentiment heard from opposing coaches whenever a school drops down a classification is “you better watch out for (insert team here)”. For coaches in the Long Pin this season, the team to watch out for is Horseshoe Bend, a playoff team a year ago in the 1AD1 ranks that graduated only two seniors.
While it hurts in a big way to lose three-year starting quarterback Gavin Miller and go-to receiving threat Blake Foster, expectations remain high for the Mustangs.
Quade Renfro will assume an increased work-load as he moves from running back to quarterback in a run-heavy offensive attack.
Joining Renfro in the backfield will be running back Austin Fry.
While listed as a receiver, Coltyn Smith is a talent that Horseshoe Bend looks to get the ball to in a variety of other ways as well.
The development of the new quarterback will be fun to watch.
“I am excited to see Quade Renfro’s transition from running back to quarterback as a senior. He has put in a lot of time in the weight room over the last year and I expect to see the results show on the field,” said third year head coach Craig Elliott.
The front line should continue to show progress as well.
“We will be returning all three interior offensive linemen. I think that our offensive line will be much improved from last year,” added Elliott.
How well the defense plays will make or break the season for a team that should have plenty of offensive ability.
The defensive line featuring Mike Farrar, Ben Howerton, Calvin Drake and Smith looks to be the strength of the unit, with Tyler Barry and Jesse Osorio seeing time there as well.
“I think the strength of our defense will be the front four anchored by Ben Howerton at defensive end,” said Elliott.
He notes there are areas of emphasis for improvement from the unit as a whole however.
“We need to improve our physical play and work to become better tacklers.”
Each side of the ball has some exciting pieces in place, with enough talent to immediately compete for a playoff spot in the Long Pin in year one.
Renfro and the Mustangs get started with the 2018 season on the road at Murtaugh, a program on the rise which also returns the majority of its pieces from a year ago.