If there's one thing people need it's options.
For Moffat County High School senior Mike Charchalis, who will possibly be the starting quarterback for the 2001 Bulldogs' team, play options will abound in the impending season, and Saturday he got to see most of them in a live-fire scrimmage.
Moffat County High School traveled to Carbondale Saturday for a three-game scrimmage against Roaring Fork, Montrose and Rifle. The varsity squad took most of the snaps in the three scrimmages, with the exception of match-up with Rifle, where the junior varsity saw most of the action.
The Bulldogs' offense, which is modeled after Fisher DeBerry's option attack at the Air Force Academy, was more than proficient in its dry run against other team's defenses.
In the three scrimmages, the varsity and junior varsity combined for five touchdowns, and set up one field goal. The three opponents were only able to find the end zone twice against the Bulldogs, and score one field goal against them.
"Everything worked real well Saturday," Charchalis said. "The option we're running really seemed to catch the defenses off guard. It seemed to be a surprise attack to them."
The Bulldogs honed their offense this summer. The coaches met with the Air Force coaching staff, and the players went through skeleton practices dry run practices with no pads and no defense.
Saturday was the team's first real test against live opponents, and not only were the coaches impressed with the Bulldogs' ability to retain their new offense in the heat of battle, they were impressed with the level of zeal they did it with.
"The kids were up for the scrimmage, and put together some impressive drives," Head coach John Haddan said. "And along the way, we were able to accomplish some of the season's goals early on."
The team has two main goals, Haddan said. The first goal is to keep the defense off the field, which the offense did using long drives down the field including a 70-yard scoring drive against Montrose.
The second goal which Haddan had set for his team, and felt was accomplished Saturday, was for the defense to shut down the run. That will be imperative for team success when the team starts in the run-heavy Western Slope Conference (WSC).
Even before the Bulldogs see their first WSC opponent, stopping the run will be important for team success, since they will start the season Saturday against perennial powerhouse Faith Christian High School, from Denver.
"Faith Christian has only six or seven plays they'll run," Haddan said, addressing his team before practice. "But that's all they need, because they'll run those six or seven plays perfectly."
Faith Christian is a Class 2A school. Though playing in a smaller class than the 4A Bulldogs, they are a good team, and big, Haddan said. In last year's match up against Faith Christian, which the Bulldogs lost, nearly every Moffat County lineman was outweighed by at least 20-pounds.
The weight advantage may have given Faith Christian a decisive edge last year, but the Bulldogs hope to combat it this year with superior play execution and a desire to redeem last year's loss.
"It will be a tough game, but I think we can win it," Charchalis said. "We've got a lot of experience on both sides of the line, and it seems that everyone is ready for the season."