The last time the Hoover football program entered a season not ranked either first or second in the state in preseason polling, some members of the current squad weren’t aware of the Bucs’ football legacy. Heck, some of them weren’t even alive.
Now, they are, and they will enter the 2016 campaign alongside their teammates, collectively expected to be the state’s third-best program.
Hoover, coming off another impressive 10-3 campaign, still earned one first place vote in the Alabama Sports Writers Association preseason poll after a season in which the Bucs lost to eventual state runner-up Spain Park in the state semifinals.
The season-opening ranking surely isn’t intended as a slight, but the Bucs just might see it that way. Popularized by the erstwhile MTV reality show Two-A-Days, Hoover still gets national attention and frequently finds its way into the Super 25 rankings, among others.
This year the climb will be a tiny bit further, not that such a slope will keep Hoover from the top. They’re just starting from slightly less familiar terrain.