The team also will have enough seniors, 22, to fill the entire offense and defense.
Combs made it clear all the senior players have done a great job and put in the work to get where they are now.
“Eleven have started multiple games since they were sophomores…They’ve done a great job…The offensive line and defensive line are heavy in seniors,” Combs said.
Finishing last year with a 2-8 record and winning their last two games, Combs said the summer was spent in the weight room, going to camps and fine tuning the little things to improve on their record – including going back to the fundamentals and working on better pursuit of the ball.
With this season’s schedule being the same as last year’s, the Cougars will begin play against Class AA Bremen Aug. 24 at the West Georgia Kickoff Classic at the University of West Georgia in Carrollton. Combs said he knows what to expect from a team to whom Alexander lost 34-28 in 2012.
“It’s a big stage out at West Georgia. Last year we played a good two quarters of football, but let them come back in the last quarter and a half. Hats off to them, they’re a grinding team…We have to play physical with them,” Combs said.
When it comes to the team this year, Combs said, “The expectations are to win more games than last season. We have to grind them out. Take it one play at a time, one game at a time.
“We have gotten bigger and gotten stronger. We can’t let the other teams push us. We have to play our game and focus on the little things.”
Head coach: Matt Combs, fourth season as a head coach, all at Alexander (8-22-0).
Key returners: C Cameron Carder, R Ernest Carter, all around athlete Brian Dansereau, G/DE Deion Evans, Collin Geisey, Slot Quinton Gissentanner, Mikell Lands-Davis, Slot Darrel Mims, TE/OLB Mushro, G/LB Taylor Schartle, TB/NG Tyler Tolbert , LT Josh Turner
Last year: 2-8 overall; third in their subregion of Region 5-AAAA.
Aug. 24 Bremen (at University of West Georgia)
Aug. 30 Bye
Sept. 6 McIntosh
Sept. 13 at Carver-Atl.
Sept. 20 Bye
Sept. 27 at Troup
Oct. 4 Shaw
Oct. 11 LaGrange
Oct. 18 at Sandy Crk.
Oct. 25 Carrollton
Nov. 2 at Columbus
Nov. 8 Fayette County