By SCOTT COTTOS
THE REVIEW TIMES
If the second Derek Kidwell era at Fostoria High School is anything like the first, fans will have plenty to celebrate.
Derek Kidwell the player never endured a losing season. In fact, he played in two state championship games and helped win one of them.
In addition to winning the Division II state title, the 1991 Redmen sported the Associated Press’ Mr. Football award winner in the form of Kidwell himself.
The 2014 Fostoria squad is a long way from any of those achievements. But before he’s finished in his return to the school, Derek Kidwell the coach wants his alma mater to again be known as a football power.
The second Derek Kidwell era begins to post results Friday night when the Redmen open their season against Toledo Scott. Game time at Toledo Start High School is scheduled for 7 p.m.
“I think they’re excited,” said Kidwell, who is in his 15th year and third school as a head coach.
In his last two stops, Kidwell turned around struggling programs at Hopewell-Loudon and Fremont Ross. Now he attempts to do the same with an Fostoria program that has lost all of its last 20 games in a two-year span.
Kidwell acknowledges that it’s special to have the opportunity to bring winning back to Fostoria — the last football coach with a cumulative winning record at the school was Derek’s father, Dick Kidwell, who retired after 20 seasons in 1996 — but he’s not feeling any different about this opener than others in the past.
“I’m anxious, but it’s on the road,” he said. “Maybe next week, for the first home game (against Cardinal Stritch, it’ll feel different.”
Kidwell said his squad of 40 has adapted well to a system that’s greatly different from the one that was in place the last two seasons under former coach Jim Kelly.
“It’s gotten better,” Kidwell said. “I’ve liked what I’ve seen of the development of the offense and the defense, and they’re coming to practice each day with confidence.”
While the Redmen will try to score with a spread offense under the command of sophomore quarterback Jayden Stanton, the Bulldogs will counter with a ground-oriented attack out of an I formation.
“The have a big offensive line and two very, very good running backs,” Kidwell said. “We’re going to have to play well defensively. We’re also going to have to play well on special teams because of their speed and athleticism.”
Scott’s Bulldogs are coming off a 2013 season in which they were 4-6 overall and 3-2 in the Toledo City League. Scott won its last three games before losing several standout seniors to graduation.
Kidwell particularly wants to see the Redmen get off to a strong start in the contest.
“We have to have success and get some positive vibes going early in the game,” he said. “The longer we’re able to make positive plays, the better off we’ll be.”
Stanton will be joined in the starting offensive backfield by sophomore running back Ryan Phillips. Senior Kaleb Bemis, juniors Kobey Bemis and Jordan Marshall and sophomore Dae’Mier Johnson will be the wide receivers. Sophomore Darien Tey will be at center, with senior Alex Navarro and sophomore Gage Scott at the guards and junior Brystan Baeder and sophomore Jarrett Lorenzen at the tackles.
Fostoria starting defensive line will have Baeder and sophomore Xavier Galvan at the ends and Scott and freshman Montrese Brooks at the tackles. Navarro and junior Cordero Diaz will be the inside linebackers, while the outside linebackers will be Phillips and Kaleb Bemis. Johnson and Marshall will be the cornerbacks and Stanton will be the safety.
- The Docket
- Member Service