High School Sports

New Northwestern coach changing football culture, aiming high

The Northwestern Trojans continue to work in preparation for the upcoming season under the leadership of a new head coach.

Page Wofford returned to Northwestern during the summer to take on his first head coaching job. He had been an assistant coach at Northwestern for several years before leaving for two years to be an assistant at Daniel High School.

Wofford said he is satisfied with the numbers he has.

“Every coach wants more players, and so do I,” Wofford said. “However, we have enough numbers to create competition at every position.... That is what is important.”

He also likes the mix of players he has by classes.

“We have a good senior class and we have a good number of veteran players,” Wofford said. “In addition we have a good group of underclassmen as well as some new players....”

He has already set high goals.

“We want to win the state championship,” he said. “ That is the goal of this program every year. We want our players to be winners in the classroom and on the field. We expect them to be leaders in the classroom and put forth their maximum effort on the field every day.”

Every team has to have good leadership on the field in order to win.

“I am happy with our team leadership,” he said. “We are picking each other up every day. Team leadership is what I like to see.”

Wofford said his offensive line is getting better every day. He is counting on Jordan Knox, Moraya Bankole, and Nygel McKinnon to be the leaders there.

He also said the offensive backs have worked hard and improved. Riley Duran and Tay McCroey are working at quarterback, while Jayshon Williams is expected to be the leader at running back.

The receivers as a group are young. Wofford is looking to Ger-Cari Caldwell and Gregory Bivens to lead them as they continue to improve.

Wofford said he is confident his defensive line will be strong and physical. He is counting on Jayden Campbell, Julian Campbell, and Zawon Brown to anchor the defensive front.

Wofford said the linebackers are quick and aggressive. The leaders there are Gregory Johnson III and Jackson Chumley. Cam McCroey and Marc Wells are being counted on for leadership among the defensive backs.

Nick Acus and Kanoah Vinsett will handle all of the kicking for the Trojans.

Wofford has made some moves since he arrived this summer.

“We moved some players to create depth and give us more competition at every position,” the coach said. “They all bought in to that, and we will be a stronger team.”

Wofford said he is pleased with the overall work ethic of this year’s team, and the progress they have made.

“We have improved by leaps and bounds,” Wofford said. “I can see that we have more room to grow, and we will work hard and continue to get better.”

The overall schedule is tough, but he wants that to improve the program and get it back to where he wants it to be.

“I want to play a tough non-region schedule,” Wofford said. “When you do that you get better. That gets you ready for the difficult region schedule and the playoffs.”

Wofford faces some challenges as he returns to Northwestern.

“We have got to change the culture,” he said. “We are constantly trying to get our players to understand the way we are going to do things from now on.”

Wofford said he is elated to be back at Northwestern.

“I still can not believe it,” he said. “Every day when I get up I ask myself what can I do to earn the title I currently have. I have been blessed. I am going to work hard every day to make this program better and earn everyone’s trust.”

Coming Wednesday: Nation Ford