ELTON, La. (KPLC) - Elton finished 2018 with a 3-8 overall record, and a first-round playoff appearance. As head coach Donald Bruchhaus approaches his second year as head coach, the Indians are making some changes.
“Once the season ended, we needed to start rethinking how we do things around here to fit our personnel. We went and visited several good coaches in the spring, and we learned some new things," said Bruchhaus. "We’ll be a run-oriented team and two tight ends and two wings. We’ll be a power football team and that’s something that suits our personnel.”
Offensively, the Indians lost plenty of talent and only return four starters from a year ago. As the team transitions to a ‘ground and pound’ mentality, Elton will rely heavily on their guys upfront as the team brings back a trio of linemen in Logan Battiste, Malcolm Robinson and Tyler McCrea.
“Our strength is our offensive line. We have size upfront and experience," Bruchhaus said. "We’re going to use those guys and get behind them and run power football.”
“I feel like I’m going to be protected,” admitted Elton running back Bryce Laughlin. "They weigh about 270.”
Quarterback Chandler Leonard knows all about protection being that he spent the last three seasons on the offensive line. This year, he’s proven to be the one capable of calling the shots.
“Last season he would run our scout team for us because we were short bodies and it turns out that he proved himself to be a quarterback," said Bruchhaus. "He’s been working out at that position for a few months now and we’re liking it.”
“Over the summer, it was new for me. I’ve become very confident with the ball," Leonard admitted. "I like it, I like it a lot.”
On defense, Elton lacks starting experience, returning just five players from a year ago. Also like the offense, the Indians will look to the line for leadership as Malcolm Robinson will go both ways and Zane LeJeune will be back for his junior season, but this year things will be different.
“We’re revamping the defense. We’ll be running more of a 50 defense where we will have more guys up front trying to stop the other teams running game," Bruchhaus said. "We’re going to use our strength, which is our lineman and try and put some of those guys on the field.”
Elton may be lacking experience, but the team makes up for it with senior leadership. The Indians have 13 seniors on the roster aiming to help lead Elton back into the win column.
“We’ve been looking forward to getting back on the field since the day our season ended last year," said Bruchhaus. "The kids are fired up. We’ve had a good offseason and we’re just looking forward to 2019.”