2021 FFN Preseason Tour: Melbourne

Melbourne finished with 8 wins and a playoff appearance in 2020.
Melbourne finished with 8 wins and a playoff appearance in 2020.(KAIT-TV)
Published: Aug. 23, 2021 at 12:47 PM CDT
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MELBOURNE, Ark. (KAIT) - It was an 8-win season and a playoff appearance for the Melbourne Bearkatz in 2020.

Casey Moreland is the new head coach for the Bearkatz, but while there’s a new coach in town, the expectations remain the same.

“We are committed, we’re working hard, we’re doing the little things to try to get better,” Moreland said. “It’s a brand new system, new terminology we’re trying to get familiar with and it’s a lot of the same plays, lot of the same concepts but we got different ways of calling it so we’re trying to get more familiar with the way I call things and trying to get our kids to play hard. This is my first year at Melbourne so I’m learning the kids, learning what skill sets they have, the talent that they bring to the table.”

“We weren’t as strong as some people but we absolutely we got after it in the weight room this offseason and really focused on adapting to the new system,” Senior fullback and linebacker Ethan Seay said. “Offensively, we’ve got to be able to understand our new assignments like Coach Moreland said. It’s a new system we’ve got to learn it. And defensively, we’ve got to get hats to the ball.”

“We’ve really hit the weight room pretty hard and we’ve had to learn our signs from the sidelines because instead of doing a huddle we’re doing faster plays,” Senior center and linebacker Payton Webb said. “It was kind of confusing at the beginning but I think we’ve all really understood the calls from the sideline and it’s looking a lot better.”

Melbourne opens the season Friday at home vs. Clinton.

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