Photo courtesy of sewanee.edu
By Richard Pryor III
Football coach Travis Rundle, fresh off breaking Sewanee football’s losing streak that lasted more than a year, informed The Sewanee Purple that this season was a “step in the right direction.”
“Our goal is to be a championship program,” he stated, and he added that this year has successfully laid the foundations for future success.
In Rundle’s first year with the Sewanee football team, where he replaced Tommy Laurendine along with Laurendine’s staff and game plan, the team had several bright spots and finished the season with three wins, the most for the team since 2014.
Rundle is not satisfied with winning just a few games and revealed that some of his work would be about changing the team’s mentality so that they fight for 60 minutes each game and then they can focus on “the little things.”
Rundle highlighted the efforts of some of his players, such as Sam Hearn (C’20), who started at quarterback last season and was the backup quarterback for this season; Hearn will be moving to tight end for the 2018 season. Alex Darras (C’21), who started most of the games this season, will continue in his role as first-string quarterback, with Rundle adding that he hopes that his chemistry with freshmen wide receivers Cyrus McCullough and Calid Shorter will grow into a great offensive core.
He noted that after playing many young players this season, the coaching staff is “happy with the future” of the program, with upperclass leaders like John Gaither (C’19), Travis Nadalini (C’19), Jo Jo Matlock (C’19), and Conoly Koontz (C’19) working alongside younger players such as the ones mentioned above.
Strong upperclass leadership will be found on the lines next season, with players like Gaither, Nadalini, Matlock, and Jack Spencer (C’19). Next season, Sewanee will play the following teams: Austin, Berry, Birmingham Southern, Centre, Hendrix, Kenyon, Millsaps, Rhodes, Trinity, and Washington and Lee.