Hemming starting culture change at RVHS

| August 22, 2017

WARSAW – Changes are being made in the River View High School football program and people outside of the system are starting to notice.

New head coach Mike Hemming was pretty pleased with the way his team performed in its scrimmage with Indian Valley and the positive feedback he received from their coach.

“Indian Valley is a solid program and they saw good things from us,” Hemming said. “There are always little things we can work on, but Indian Valley could tell we were very improved from where we had been. Their coach said we were 100 percent improved on fundamentals from where we were the last two years and that was a very positive thing for me to tell the kids.”

Hemming takes over a program that has gone 1-29 in the last three years and he plans to improve that record by focusing on fundamentals and encouraging everyone to have a positive mental attitude.

“It’s been a pretty smooth transition,” he said. “It’s a new system, but they are buying into it. There have been little bumps, but I think overall everyone likes the culture change. We are going to be fundamentally sound too and start with that at a young age. Everybody is going to be on the same page with offense and defense so we will be consistent.”

Hemming has already seen the teams’ numbers grow from when he was an assistant last year. He said there are 68 ninth through 12th graders playing football and last year they only had 46. Those numbers include nine seniors, some of which chose to come back after taking a year off.

They also have an offensive line that is big and quick and some speed in the backfield. The team is young though with lots of juniors and sophomores, but Hemming said some of them started as freshmen. One player he expects big things from is senior Keith Stewart.

“He’s a 6’0 fullback/middle linebacker who has athletic ability, football smarts and leadership skills,” Hemming said.

As far as team weaknesses go, Hemming said they still need to work on learning his system and that will improve with more practice.

River View has several new opponents on its schedule including Northridge, Garaway, Mohawk and West Holmes. During the season they also will face Claymont, Barnesville, Meadowbrook, Marietta and Coshocton, who he expects to once again be a tough East Central Ohio League contender.

“Coshocton lost a lot of kids, but they have a great coach and solid tradition,” Hemming said. “Their kids know how to compete.”

River View opens its season at home with a 7 p.m. game on Friday, Aug. 25 against Northridge.

Hemming is a 1999 graduate of River View High School and excited to be leading the Black Bears on the football field.

“It’s good to be home,” he said. “I want to restore pride and turn things around here.”

Helping him accomplish those goals will be Eric Bickel, Tyler McKee, Ron Vipperman, Wess Wallace, Nick Shaw, Gary Giffin and Doug Sampsel.

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About the Author ()

I started my journalism career in 2002 with a daily newspaper chain. After various stops with them, I am happy to be back home! I graduated from Coshocton High School in 1998 and received a Bachelor of Arts in Communication in 2002 from Walsh University. I also earned several awards while working for daily papers, including being honored by Coshocton County’s veterans for the stories I wrote about them. I am honored and ready to once again shine a positive light on Coshocton County. I also am the proud mother of a little girl named Sophia!

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