North Bend, Ore. -- It's back to basics at North Bend, where a bit of a rebuild for the Bulldogs is beginning.
"Last time that we've been that young was in 2015," says head coach Gary Prince. "But we had a pretty heavy junior class that filled a lot of roles for us which paid dividends for us in 2016 and those guys took us to a state championship."
Growing pains will be expected but the reps now could be invaluable later.
"There's a possibility of 5 or more sophomores starting on both sides of the ball, offense, defense. We got a real small senior class."
It isn't just a small senior class either, a small junior class too means that there is plenty of room for growth this year at North Bend. The task is keeping an eye on the ball, literally and figuratively.
"It feels like we got a lot more preparation we've got to take care. We've got to make sure focus is consistently there with a younger group. Refocus them if they get off task."
Prince thinks maybe this group of sophomores can be the same cornerstone class that led the Bulldogs to state title glory just five years ago. Which makes the leadership of the junior and senior classes even more important.
"You know maybe we'll see something similar. Who knows. That's what we're hoping for."