Polson High School football coach Pat Danley knows football championships start in the summer and virtually all skilled positions battles begin now and not in the fall.
Danley, who is entering his 18th season as a member of the Pirates’ coaching staff and second full season as head coach, started the evaluation process with a recent 7-on-7 against Whitefish High School Tuesday afternoon at Polson High School Pirates Stadium.
The battle for positions will continue when the Pirates begin two-a-days on August 10, Danley said.
“I would say (we’ve solidified) a couple of positions but there is a lot more that we are still wondering about and thinking about,” Danley said. “That depends on what kids we have (at the start of camp). There are a couple of positions that honestly could go into a variety of different directions.”
Danley knows his football personnel is an ever-evolving door from spring until the end of the fall season.
“It’s hard to know (who will be on our roster) because there are always kids you see in the spring but they surprise you when they don’t come out in the fall,” Danley said. “However, our numbers are close to the same and maybe a little bit lower (than normal) but I don’t think it will be drastically lower.”
Danley, who now enters his second year as a coach after replacing Scott Wilson in 2017, said his team’s offensive scheme will be more predicated towards balancing the passing and run attack this year.
“Obviously, we had a little bit more trial by fire in that first year,” Danley said. “I am really excited about (this season) because there are a few minor things we’ve taken care and we should have a little bit more success. We have a fair amount of receiver-type guys and we should change some things up in terms of sets. We have to play with the personnel we have. Both of our quarterbacks are comfortable in the shotgun and that is part of the rationale for a few of our offensive changes.”
Pirates’ backup quarterback Colby Soderquist took the majority of the snaps under center and could be one of the front runners to secure the Pirates’ starting position after last season’s QB Bo Kelley tore his ACL during the 2017-2018 basketball campaign.
“We aren’t going to be “Air Coryall” of the San Diego Chargers,” Danley said. “We will spread the ball out a little bit more than last season.”
Polson will have team camps July 16-19 that will feature Whitefish, Eureka, and Libby.
“The camp will be 7-on-7 like last night and it will be in full pads and we will have a lot better idea of who is coming out,” Danley said. “We will have a couple of wrestlers in the mix that will be at wrestling camp and then on June 24, we will be at Whitefish.”