New coach guiding young River View team

| August 19, 2014

LE1_8275_BLWARSAW – The expectations that first year head coach Bob Forgrave has as the 2014 season unfolds for the River View High School football team is simple and to the point.

“Improve,” said Forgrave, who only recently was named the school’s next coach.

River View finished last year’s season with a 1-9 mark and Forgrave was brought into the foray after Josh Lahmers left the school to accept the head coaching position at Newcomerstown.

Forgrave returns to his roots, having graduated from River View in 1973. Football has consumed the majority of his professional life with his most recent endeavor being the defensive coordinator at East Stroudsburg (Pa.) University, a Division II program.

Coach Forgrave said he wants the boys to take these positives from this season, “How to be a great team mate, understand commitment and what that means. Get an attitude of no matter whatever happens to you in life, you persevere. Get the “Q” word out of your vocabulary and take away the “L” word. I’ve always said winners and champions never lose, they just run out of time once in a while. That just means that – in high school the game is 48 minutes – you play the full 48 until the clock reads 0:00.00. And if you do that, you’re a winner.”

“An attitude is something that kids control,” Forgrave said. “Because when you wake up in the morning you decide what it’s going to be. There are things that they may not understand at this point but everyone talks about the journey. It’s not where you’re at; it’s where you’re going to be and where it’s going to take you.”

“The measure of success – even though we use wins and losses -it’s really what these guys go on to be in life,” Forgrave said. “That they become good fathers, good parents and good role models for their kids that they become good citizens; maybe a few of them become leaders in their community, or the state or the country. And I think we have those kinds of kids here at River View. It’s the same kind of kid here now that was here when I was here. They’re not any different. Other things have changed, kids have not changed. They still have the same basic needs that Maslow talks about; they need respect, they need love, they need a positive self-image. If they combine those things together and if they can have a team commitment then maybe they can find out what self-actualization really is.”

Forgrave said he expects the boys to gain, “A life experience. When I no longer have the passion I won’t do it anymore. I still have it. My son, who plays football at West Point, there was nobody happier for me coming to River View than him. He’s never lived here, but he understands it. I guess I want the same thing for these guys as I want for my kids. I’ll give them the same attention, care and love that I give my own. I’m going to be honest with them and I want them to be honest with me. And even if we disagree, we can respect each other.”

“We’ve come a long way with these guys in a few weeks, there’s more road to travel,” Forgrave said. “We have some good senior leaders and we have some good athletes.”

River View will field just 44 players in the top four grades, including 16 freshmen.

Forgrave has tabbed junior Casey Turnbull to be the starting quarterback while the running back corps will consist of seniors Keith Burchfield and Brandon Cox, juniors Trevor Wine and Bryar Cox and sophomore Trace Lingo.

At wide receiver will be seniors Zach Fouch, Dalton Hammond and Clay Liston and junior Tyler Pinckard. Fouch makes the switch from quarterback, a position he held the past two seasons.

Also seeking playing time in the backfield and wide out positions are juniors Zack Carroll, Charles Fetzer, Caleb Helmick, Ryan Reigle, Ki Wight, Tyler Wright and Dylan White.

Sophomores hoping to make an impact are Caden Croft, Cameron Fetzer and Shawn Stewart while freshmen include Austin Ball, Trace Berry, Cody Gray, Grant Gunn, Kyle McClain, Keith Stewart, Danny Topton, Brodie Williamson, Jorn Hocter and Rann Zimmer.

On the line, junior Sam Vickers will be the center with the guard spots held down by senior Tim Burris and junior Ty Mitchell. At the tackles will be senior Leland Lauvray and junior Tyler Watson.

Back-ups will include juniors Allen Mitchell, Cole Parks, sophomores Lucas Lauvray, Brett Shalosky, Jeremiah Starcher, Garrett Stollings and freshmen Jarrett Hardway, Drew Husk, Colton Liston, Trent McDonald, Sam Mitchell and Michael Watson.

Defensively, McClain and Lingo will be the middle linebackers with Vickers and Watson on the outside. Burchfield and Wine will be the defensive ends while Brandon Cox and Leland Lauvray are the tackles.

In the secondary, Bryar Cox and Turnbull will play safety with Fouch and Hammond on the corners.

Forgrave has more than 30 years of playing and coaching experience.

As a player, he was an offensive lineman and a linebacker for the Black Bears and went on to play the same positions as well as defensive lineman at Muskingum University.

He’s had collegiate coaching stops at Penn State, Rutgers, Army, VMI, Millersville (Pa.) University and Norberts (Wis.) College. At the high school level, he coached at Mainland in Florida and Ringgold, Penn Manor and Hempfield in Pennsylvania, helping the latter two schools reach the district playoffs.

“What excites me most is the challenge of coaching this team and the attitude of our players,” Forgrave said.

River View opens the season on Friday, Aug. 29 by hosting Danville and will play its first road contest in week two, traveling to St. Clairsville.

Tags: , ,

Category: High School, Sports

About the Author ()

Article contributed to The Beacon.

Comments are closed.