NEWPORT–Retiring Falcon Head Coach Bob Davis will take six of his players with him as he heads down to Middlebury this weekend for his final coaching assignment, guiding the Northern squad in the Annual North/South Game.
This will be Davis’ third time coaching at the game (2001, 2005, 2001), the second as a head coach.
“It is a totally different thing. The idea is to celebrate football, sportsmanship and to showcase these kids for the colleges to look at,” said the coach earlier this month.
The two teams will be working from a book of set plays, so some of the coaching is taken out of the game, but that does not matter to Davis who said of the game, “ It is a great, great experience.”
The northern squad has been working out this week in Norwich, and Davis has been pleased with how they have been going.
“Practices have been great, There are two offensive and two defensive units. One of the offensive units will be a traditional based offense like we run, and the other will be a spread offense.
“It has been fun working with the spread and trying to figure out how to get all of the kids into the mix. It is also nice to see the kids in the lower divisions get a chance to shine.”
Joining Davis on the coaching staff will be assistants Jay Bonneau, Jon Morin, Lonnie Wade, Tim Simoneau, Ian Dinzeo, and Winooski's Head Coach Josh Safran will be the apprentice coach who learns the ropes in preparation for being the head coach in a future North Couth Game.
Representing the Falcons in 2011 will be Jason Webster, Tre Sanville, Nick LeClair, Ben Bonneau, Adam Fortin, and Bubba Collins who will be the final group of North Country players to be led by the legendary coach.
In a funny twist, this years’ top ranked northern teams did not make it into any of the championship games, and Davis says this has been a “good source of motivation” for his team.
“We are using that for a lot of fire,” agreed Falcons’ OL/DL Jason Webster, “A lot of teams from the north were looking forward to going to a championship, and got taken out. So we are really looking to come back for this one.”
All of the North Country players with the exception of Bubba Collins, who will be playing defense, will be featured on the traditional offensive group.
Fans can expect to see a lot of offense, as the game is geared toward displaying those types of talents.
But, Davis said the D-men will have a chance to show their skills too.
“Since there will be no blitzing, defensive players will have to make tackles and interceptions, but the best talent always comes out, so they will get their recognition as well.”
Game time is at 12:30 with the game taking place at Middlebury College’s Youngman Field at Alumni Stadium.