Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

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August 3, 2012

Knights greet new day

WELCH — There is a new king sitting at the Knight’s roundtable this football season. Todd McCoy takes over as head football coach at Mount View High School, replacing Leon Gravely who had served the previous 15 seasons. McCoy began teaching at The View in March and he said that the time he has put in atop Tom’s Mountain is beneficial to the progress of the football program.

“I was able to get them in the weight room and it has made a big difference,” McCoy said. “We averaged about 20 kids in the weight room that weren’t playing other sports and I think it was a big difference. I got to know 90 percent of the kids before they came out here and they got to know a little bit of what to expect before we started.”

A program that had success in the ‘90s, playing for the Class AAA championship in 1990 and reaching the Class AA semifinals in 2003, the Golden Knights have fallen on hard times of late and enter this season on a 27-game losing streak.

“I don’t like to call myself a disciplinarian, but I do a bit of stuff old school. We do a lot of things that we did 20 years ago,” McCoy noted. “One thing, these kids have got to get used to, I expect them to be here every day, on time.

“We’ve got a handful of kids I know, who will want to come out when school starts, and they are not going to. Football starts on Aug. 1st and they know that. Any kid 10 years and above knows that. The first thing we have to do is get these kids to understand football is a year-round thing, it’s an every day thing. You can’t miss two, three days a week and expect to go out there on Friday and be any help to us.”

McCoy previously coached at Tygarts Valley High School in Randolph County and from day one he realized that he had something at Mount View that he has never had as a coach.

“I’ve got more team speed than I’ve ever had in 25 years,” McCoy observed. “We’ve got to be able to harness that speed and get them on the same page. The last few years they (Mount View) haven’t played as a team, a lot of individuals and a lot of good players, but they didn’t play together.”

On offense look for the Golden Knights to spread the field and use that field. Weapons include senior Maurice Brown (6-4, 222) who is moving back to tight end this year after being in the backfield last season, senior Tashaan Vineyard (6-0, 168), a wideout who will line up on the opposite side of the field from Brown, and backs Jamari Perry (5-11, 150, Jr.), Andrew Hazzard (5-6, 148, Soph.),  and LaqQuell Martin (5-11, 167, Jr.) all speedsters who will line up in the backfield and as wide outs.

“The offense I run allows us to run out of different formations,” McCoy said. “When you’re (Class) AA or A, you’ve got to play to your strengths and that could change every year. From year-to-year the playbook doesn’t change very much, but we may have different looks. That allows us to highlight some of our more mature athletes.

“You’re not going to see one guy highlighted, you’re going to see a bunch. You shut down one aspect, we’re going to move to something else.”

McCoy has 33 players on the field this fall and for the second straight year Mount View and Bluefield will not meet on the gridiron. McCoy would like to see that change.

“We anticipated being (Class) A, so we have a (Class) A schedule,” McCoy pointed out. “I want to pick Bluefield back up and I’d like to pick Princeton up. I’ve had a couple of people tell me that’s out of our league, but I think in a couple of years we’re going to be ready to go back there. These guys are used to playing Bluefield and teams like that and I’m a firm believer you don’t get any better unless you play people better than you. I want to do some stuff with that schedule.”

Mount View is the second smallest AA school in West Virginia, Summers County is the smallest. In order to qualify for playoffs a team must play at least six of its games against teams in its class or higher.

McCoy and the Golden Knights will host Independence in a scrimmage, Friday, Aug. 10 at 5 p.m., then visit PikeView for a a Grid-O-Rama on Aug. 24 that also features Webster County and Valley Fayette.

Mount View opens regular season play Aug. 24 at River View.

— Contact Bob Redd at

bredd@bdtonline.com

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