After failing to win a game last year, the Hellgate Knights are realistic about outside expectations, but they remain confident.
"We definitely are the underdogs no doubt, and we'll be able to come out, with everyone assuming we'll be easy to beat, but we'll get out and smack them in the mouth," says Hellgate senior receiver Jack Lewis. (The Graphic in the Above Video Story incorrectly identifies Lewis as 'Jake', apologies from the Sports Staff)
Some of that confidence can be traced to a new coaching staff, with Matt Softich leading the way.
"With the new coaches, they've definitely brought the excitement of football back into Hellgate, and everyone is excited, not just the players," says senior center Ryan Hamilton.
"I believe in the philosophy that Mike Van Diest, and Joe Glenn, and some of the others I coached with is that good people will win, so our coaching staff are all really good people," says Softich
While the head coach is happy with his staff, since many of them are new to the team, it means every position is up for competition.
"It intensifies it immensely, everyone is out there with a chip on their shoulder, wanting to get a spot and improve as much as they can," says senior quarterback Brayden Frohlich.
The Knights haven't seen a victory since October of 2012, but Softich is happy about his first week with the team practicing.
"I think I remember telling you that it's the direction of that first step, and our direction is north, we have the arrow pointing up," says Softich.
In taking over a football program, at a school that's been known for it's basketball over the last couple years, the coaching staff has also instilled the notion of 'making a friend for football' to help gain support.
"A big part of it, I tell these guys, and they are tired of me saying it, we want them to be a good student, a good citizen, and a good person. We don't want you to feel special because you play for Hellgate, we want special people to play for Hellgate," says Softich.
"That means a lot to me, As we go out day by day, be nice to everyone, encourage everybody, because we're not a group of kids who like to look down on anybody, because we know how it feels," adds Hamilton.