The Kentwood football team was pushing itself under the hot sun Saturday, eyes on a prize almost three months away.
Despite some hard times for the team of late, the Conquerors’ seniors and third-year head coach Mike Bush are looking for more than just making the playoffs. They want to make a playoff run.
“We’re looking good. I think in my third year we’re starting to figure out, kinda get our flow exactly, what we want to do on offense and defense,” Bush said. “Hired a new OC and a new DC this year and they’re running things pretty smooth. It’s given me an opportunity to do a little bit of everything else.”
Bush took the reins at Kentwood in 2015 after a four-year stint as wide receivers coach at Bothel. A former All-Pac-10 honorable mention for Washington State in both football and basketball, Bush is no stranger to competition.
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“I think our biggest thing that we’re trying to improve on is just create just an atmosphere of competition,” Bush said. “I think our guys, our seniors, did a really good job this offseason of just getting after it and competing. Now they’re bringing that out on the field and getting after it.”
That hard work showed in practice while the team as running through drills. The offense looked particularly sharp.
“We’re excited about our quarterback and our seniors coming back,” Bush said.
Senior quarterback Justin Seiber expressed confidence in the upperclassmen.
“We have a great core group of seniors,” Seiber said.
Kentwood hasn’t been to the state playoffs since 2011 and hasn’t won a playoff game since 2004 — something Bush and his team are looking to change this year.
“We definitely want to get some playoff wins. This senior group, I think we are primed and ready to go ahead and make a deep run,” Bush said. “We’re looking to compete and beat one of those KingCo teams this year.”
The Conquerors open the season at 7 p.m. on Sept. 1 at Glacier Peak.