Brian Maupin’s first-season at Maumelle didn’t quite go as hoped as the Hornets struggled to a 3-7 overall record and didn’t make the playoffs.
Injuries played a part in last season; performance as the Hornets started the year 2-0 before losing five consecutive games and limped to just one more win, an overtime thriller against Watson Chapel.
There’s some talent back from last season and seniors Alan Timmons and Jaden Worsham return. Timmons did double duty last season as wide receiver and was among the conference’s best with five touchdowns and 500 yards on 37 catches. Timmons also excelled in the defensive secondary, while also returning kicks.
Last season he scored touchdowns on offense, defense and special teams.
Worsham filled in at running back as injuries also started depleting numbers, but showed some nifty moves and rushed for 450 yards and five touchdowns on 70 carries.
Those two, as well as others, will be key this season, Maupin said but he also noted that at last week’s scrimmage at Marion, he had some other standouts.
“I was very encouraged and couldn't have been more proud of Sophomore quarterback Andrew Bjork,” Maupin said and added Bjork, in his first start, finished with three touchdowns passing as well as nearly 300 yards in two quarters of action.
“The defense forced a couple turnovers,” Maupin said. “We need to do a much better job of protecting the ball and limiting the big plays but I think it will be a very exciting season for the Hornets!.”
Defense is something of Maupin’s speciality as he was previously the defensive coordinator at Joe T. Robinson, and also played linebacker in his college days at Harding.
“I truly believe my time at Harding molded and shaped me to be the man and coach I am today,” Maupin said and added, “Every coach on our staff played in college and/or coached in college which I think gives our guys a huge advantage!.”
Maupin expects some improvements in his second year as head coach. Not just in the team’s performance, but his own.
“There's so many other things a head coach has to deal with and account for that it's more than just coaching the scheme,” he said. “The biggest adjustment would have to be not being able to focus on the football Xs and Os side of things.”
The regular season starts at 8 p.m. this Friday at home against Sylvan Hills.
Hornets at a glanceLast season: 3-7Head coach: Brian Maupin; Career record: 3-7, second yearHootens Arkansas Football preseason pick: Sixth in the 5A-Central, No. 20 in Class 5A.Base offense? Spread 10/11 personnel Players to watch on offense? Alan Timmons Sr. WR; Andrew Bjork Soph QB,;Elijah Newell Sr.; ATH Jonathan Frost Jr.; ATH Jaden Worsham Sr. RB Jordan Harris Soph. Base defense? 4-2-5Players to watch on defense? Alan Timmons Sr. DB; Elijah Newell Sr. ATH; Jonathan Frost Jr. ATH; Dalen Larry Sr. DL; BJ Beets Jr. DL; Bubba Johnson Soph LB; Jason Barham Sr. CB
Last season: 3-7
Head coach: Brian Maupin; Career record: 3-7, second year
Hootens Arkansas Football preseason pick: Sixth in the 5A-Central, No. 20 in Class 5A.
Base offense? Spread 10/11 personnel
Players to watch on offense? Alan Timmons Sr. WR; Andrew Bjork Soph QB,;Elijah Newell Sr.; ATH Jonathan Frost Jr.; ATH Jaden Worsham Sr. RB Jordan Harris Soph.
Base defense? 4-2-5
Players to watch on defense? Alan Timmons Sr. DB; Elijah Newell Sr. ATH; Jonathan Frost Jr. ATH; Dalen Larry Sr. DL; BJ Beets Jr. DL; Bubba Johnson Soph LB; Jason Barham Sr. CB
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