VENICE - It's a new year, and a new outlook as the Venice Indians will not have the Manatee Hurricanes in their district any longer. The fact that they also return all but three starters adds to the high Indian expectations in 2013.
If coaches were asked the two most important aspects for a football team, talent and experience would get most votes. The Indians have loads of both as they prepare for the 2013 season.
"The most exciting part is we have a tremendous amount of experience coming back from last year. We only lost 3 starters," says head coach John Peacock.
The large number of returning starters takes care of the experience aspect, while 1,800-yard rusher Terry Polk and transfer quarterback Dom Marino are just the beginning of the talent angle. "We all basically came up together, came along to varsity together. We have been playing together for a few years. We are used to each other so we should be rolling," says Polk.
As for defense, they have four strong linebackers that will anchor a defense that is expected to be very balanced. “I'm just excited to see what the season comes out. We have a lot of good starters coming back. I am just excited. I am ready to play," says senior linebacker Tyler MacKenzie.
The Indians hope to get past the 2nd round of the playoffs this season, the 7th for head coach John Peacock.
The fact that powerhouse Manatee High is no longer in their district due to off-season realignment will help the Indians immensely. "It is still a big rivalry game for us, but it is going to be fun playing different teams, traveling different places to see what we can do," says MacKenzie.
"Our goal is to get past the 2nd round. We've been stuck in the 2nd round in the past 6 years and our goal is to get past that," says Peacock.
Venice is at home against Southeast in their Kickoff Classic on August 24th, then they open their regular season the following Friday at Palmetto against Dom Marino's uncle, head coach Dave Marino.