Arlee High School football coach Chuck Forgey knows every season has as a different complexion, and with all of the changes that occurred throughout the conference, it will take awhile for the 2019 story lines to unfold.
The Warriors have one story line headed into the new season, their current roster will be young with only three starters from last season’s team that qualified for the quarterfinals back for this year, Forgey will expect this year’s season to have a different complexion.
In his team’s first-ever season, he has already seen progress.
“We have progressed right along as to how I would hope,” Forgey said. “Our team still has a lot to learn. We have a lot of young players that are inexperienced guys and they are still learning. We are just doing it on the fly, and trying to get everything ready for game number one this week.”
Currently, Arlee is sitting at a total of 18 participants as they prepare to head into the season opener at 7 p.m. Friday against Troy.
Forgey anticipates Troy to be tougher this season based on what he has seen of their skill players during 5-on-5 drills this summer at Montana Tech.
“I think a lot of people are going to be surprised by what they saw this summer because they had a pile of kids, and they looked pretty good,” Forgey said. “They were pretty big and fast and they were throwing the ball around. There were a lot of kids that just looked like they were having a good time.”
Each season has its own complexion, and with all of the changes that have occurred in the previous season, Forgey anticipates the conference will be more competitively even than in past seasons.
“Every year runs in cycles, and each year we get a group out, and they have a lot of turnouts, but some years (some teams) don’t have a lot of boys come out (for football) for different reasons,” Forgey said. “We may not have actual kids that are interested in football, and some classes have a lot of boys, but not a lot of boys come out for football.”
With a shortage of officials throughout Western Montana to referee football games, games on the schedule aren’t necessarily set in stone.
Some of the games may be moved to Thursday or Saturday, depending on the outcome.
Early in the season, the Warriors hope they can continue to compete at the level they achieved last season, where they qualified for the MHSA Class C, 8-man football playoffs.