2022 Football Preview: Owensboro Red Devils

August 6, 2022 | 12:05 am

Updated August 5, 2022 | 8:13 pm

Following a 2021 campaign in which Owensboro football just had two losses and fell just shy of reaching the state championship, the expectations and hope to grab the school’s fifth state championship are still ever present for Head Coach Jay Fallin and company.

Last season was a rollercoaster of a year for Owensboro, as they had their four-game starting quarterback Gavin Wimsatt graduate early and begin his college football career with Rutgers. But the team showed no animosity towards Wimsatt and now senior Kasey Boone filled in well to keep the Red Devils chugging.

He won his first 10 games as a starting quarterback before Owensboro fell to Frederick Douglass in the postseason 35-7 and after a strong off-season and a new offensive coordinator joining the staff, Boone will be right back under center this year.

Boone will also have plenty of weapons in his arsenal as well, including a strong wide receiving core of seniors Khalil Rogers and Elijah Pendleton. Rogers is a threat as a receiver and in special teams, picking up multiple college offers while Pendleton is an impressive athlete that plays both sides of the ball.

“[Khalil] is the most refined wide receiver I have ever coached,” Fallin said. Incredible burst, super detailed route runner, great hands and plays with tremendous effort on every play… “[Pendleton] is a big, strong, athletic wide receiver and outside linebacker.  [He is also] a state champion level high-jumper with 6’5 PR.”

The Red Devils will also have a healthy Kenyatta Carbon, who had 12 rushing touchdowns and three receiving touchdowns despite missing six games last season. Pair that with sophomore running back Deion Winstead who’s expected to take some carries and a strong offensive line that includes standouts like Trey Miller and Jakson Lindsey, and Owensboro will look to apply pressure on the offensive side of the ball night in and night out.

Another key player will be senior tight end and linebacker Jeremiah Goodwin, who had a big junior year and was the Owensboro Times 2021 Defensive Player of the Year.

“He is the only guy on the team who started every game both ways in 2021,” Fallin said. “Goodwin is Incredibly talented and has a diverse skill set as a football player. Great blocking and hands as a tight end and has a tremendous motor and great tackler with great instincts on defense.”

Owensboro will also have key defensive anchors in senior defensive lineman Sahvon Hines and safety/nickel in Zach Clark. Fallin called Clark a hard-nosed, hard-playing, instinctive player with high IQ, while describing Hines as the most explosive and disruptive defensive lineman he’s ever had.

Adding in defensive newcomers in sophomores Cayden Ray and Ethan Gough, as well as Drew Lanz—who went 147/150 on PATs last season—and the Red Devils have a well-rounded roster.

Owensboro’s roster is a senior-laden group and Fallin said that they have the talent to match. He went on, saying that if they can stay healthy they have a great shot at competing for some hardware again this season.

“Many of our seniors have started over 20 games, including eight playoff games,” Fallin said. “If we can stay healthy and work hard throughout the season to continue to improve, I think we will have another great opportunity to have a deep postseason run and compete for a championship.  Right now, our goal is to get better each day.”

With a season as successful as Owensboro had in 2021, picking and choosing things to fine tune could be difficult. However, Fallin said there’s always room for improvement and that still holds true coming into the new fall season.

“We can always improve in every area,” Fallin said. “We need to have the ability to establish our run game against good defenses early in games better than last year. We also need to take away our opponents’ rushing attack more effectively than last season.” 

The expectations for players individually haven’t changed either, as Fallin said that everyone must put the team first and sacrifice for team goals in order to have success as a whole.

“We must work hard and come together through the preseason and carry that spirit of hard work and improvement throughout the season,” Fallin said. “We must play hard on every snap and always support one another. We have to avoid all avoidable mistakes and concentrate and execute on every snap.” 

August 6, 2022 | 12:05 am

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