“Despite how bad it was last season, our kids still conducted themselves with class and character,” Brown said. “That’s the foundation for anything that’s going to be special here. The adversity also instilled their resolve to work hard.”
The team already has begun summer workouts and the coaching staff has seen an increased commitment from the players.
“Our offseason has been going well and the kids have steadied the course to make a turnaround for this season,” Brown said. “They’re doing all the things necessary to affect a positive change in the program and get back to winning ways.”
Offensively, the Hornets return several top running backs including two rising seniors — Chris Miller who rushed for 483 yards and a team-high seven touchdowns, and Otis Askew, who also had seven scores along with a team-high 594 yards on the ground.
The coaching staff also has been impressed with the offseason work of rising junior RB Zaylan Woolfork.
“Each of our running backs has had a good offseason and the competition will only make each of them better,” Brown said.
Rising senior Jacob Lester returns as the starting quarterback after throwing for a team-high 876 yards and six touchdowns last season.
Hiram’s defense will welcome back most of its starting line, starting with rising seniors Jonathan Greenard and Attorney Gallman, who had 71 tackles last season. Rising senior Robert Williams and rising junior Taylor Turner will lead the linebacker unit.
The Hornets won’t practice next week due to Fourth of July but returns to compete in several 7-on-7 passing competitions. The team will also participate in a defensive camp against competition from several elite programs such as Tucker and Gainesville. Training camp with pads will start on Aug. 1.
Hiram opens its 2014 season in a road contest against Cedartown on Aug. 29.