The Cuyahoga Heights High School football team has qualified for the Ohio High School Athletic Association Division V state playoffs 14 out of the past 15 seasons and has finished atop the Chagrin Valley Conference Metro Division six consecutive years.
Despite losing 14 starters – including eight two-way players from the 2011 squad that posted a 9-2 record, 16th-year head coach Al Martin said the Redskins began fall practice on Monday expecting to maintain the program’s history of success. The team has adopted the slogan “New Team – Same Dream” as its 2012 mantra.
Martin recently answered questions about this year’s squad and its upcoming season for WKYC’s usatodayhss.com Web site.
WKYC’s usatodayhss.com: What was your message to your team during your first meeting of fall camp?
Cuyahoga Heights football coach Al Martin: We graduated a lot of starters. Many of you have worked hard over the summer to prepare yourselves to step into those roles. We have a great tradition here at Cuyahoga Heights; let’s keep it going.
WKYC: What is the biggest question/uncertainty about your team that you hope to have answered by the start of conference play?
Martin: We have lots of inexperienced players stepping into prominent roles; experience gained early in the season will be invaluable during conference play.
WKYC: What are your goals for your team this season?
Martin: Get better as the season progresses [and] play up to our ability level.
WKYC: What must happen for your team to be able to accomplish those goals?
Martin: We must work hard in the preseason. Players must develop confidence in themselves and their teammates.
WKYC: What do you expect to be your team’s greatest strength this season?
Martin: We have a number of playmakers at the skill positions on both offense and defense.
WKYC: What is your team’s biggest weakness right now?
Martin: We are inexperienced and undersized up front.
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