The District 2A-6 coaches voted Vian as the favorite to win the district, and if the Wolverines do it, they'll likely do it with as many as eight sophomores in the starting lineup.
Hunter Spencer, a 6-foot-5, 260-pound senior, anchors the offensive and defensive lines, but Vian could have a pair of sophomores manning the backfield.
Rowdy Simon is the expected starting running back, and Landon Decker could be the team's quarterback, though he will have to win the job away from senior John Jumper.
Jumper suffered a severely broken ankle early in the season and Decker took over as a freshman.
"Landon really got thrown into the fire as a freshman," coach Brandon Tyler said. "He's working hard and running the offense a lot better, but picking between those two guys is probably a Sept. 3 decision."
Hartshorne will stay on ground
Hartshorne hasn't been afraid to throw the ball around the last couple years, but the Miners are more likely to pound out yards on the ground this season with a strong trio of running backs — Kenny Simpson, Garrett Grivette and Blake Beare.
Beare was one of the team's top players last season, but tore up his knee in the first game.
"This is a strong, tough-nosed team," coach Bill Williams said. "We took second in power lifting. It's been one of the most dedicated groups we've had."
Continue reading this story on the...
MORE FROM NEWSOK
District 2A-6 coaches' poll
1. Vian (9-2)
2. Talihina (12-1)
3. Hartshorne (7-4)
4. Panama (5-5)
5. Heavener (2-8)
6. Wilburton (0-10)
7. Pocola (2-8)
Note: Last year's record in parentheses