A New Era For FDR Football!


As March rolled around, spring ball was on the horizon. While the 2021-2022 school year was coming to an end, all the football players were playing spring ball getting ready for the offseason and summer. A football player’s motto going into the offseason is that there is no offseason. There is no need to get ready, when you stay ready. That’s why every player was working out and trying to improve their performance, so when they came back in August- they were ready for the rigorous demands of the regular season. However, this new season was not going to be like every other season prior. There was something new that would be in effect this new football season.

The FDR Cougars were now getting a new head coach. The former offensive coordinator, Coach Rienzie, was now being promoted to head coach, because the former head coach, Coach Klyap, and Assistant Coach Cinamon, were retiring. The coaching staff was also getting restructured with the addition of Coach Hand and Coach Saunds. This change of course has created a different atmosphere for the team, but the assimilation to gaining a new head coach, has been quite smooth and steady for the players. Coach Rienzie was already a well known coach, way before being the head coach of the team. The conversion to him being head coach has been quite effortless. All through training camp, Coach Rienzie had been working and drilling in the techniques to convert the football team into an unstoppable unit of highly skilled individuals. Throughout August, the coaches molded the minds and bodies of their players, so they would be ready for any challenges they would face on the field.

The FDR football team this year has many returning players and Junior Varsity players who are moving up to Varsity. The team will have to play to their strengths more closely this year if they hope to accomplish a ton of success. The strengths this year’s team are their ability to prepare for games and finish when times get tough. The team watches film and practices diligently. In the first two regular season games, the team was down by more than 2 scores in the first half and made a comeback in the fourth quarter.  The team has strong resilience to not drop their heads and admit defeat. When times get tough the team glues themselves together, and they figure out a way to get the job done.  Despite the fact that the team has strengths, they also have weaknesses. A weakness of the team is discipline and focus. Even though the Cougars made a comeback in the fourth quarter in their early season games, the only reason that they had to make those comebacks was because the team was down by two scores in the first half. The team comes out unfocused and undisciplined at times. The players need to be more focused and seem all over the place to start the game. It takes them too long to get into a flow, where they’re just playing football and mainly trusting in each other and relying on their instincts. The football team has to come out of the gate firing on all cylinders if they want this season to go well. They have to realize their playing a game before it plays them.

This new season is different, and it will be challenging. Even so, the players are ready to face it and welcome it with open arms. When I asked starting Linebacker/Left tackle Haoyu Ding how he feels about the upcoming season, he said, “football is the only sport where you put your life in other people’s hands and that only happens when a friend becomes family.” He is confident that if we trust each other we could go a long way. I also asked starting Running back/Safety Deon Ridore what he thought the team was capable of this year. He quickly told me, “I feel like we have the potential to go to the playoffs. We just gotta focus in practice and execute in games. If we can do those two things, I think we are going to the playoffs for sure.” Deon is confident if the team bets on themselves, we could make it far into the season. The players are looking forward to what the team could accomplish this season and are equipped for the setbacks they will face on this journey.  The whole team believes that Roosevelt Football is Gotham City. Times might get tough and ugly. We might make mistakes and lose games, but in the end the task at hand will get accomplished!