August 14, 2009
Last season found the Covenant football team in uncharted territory, as the Eagles made the state playoffs for the first time in program history. With a new coach and a very motivated group of players, the team hopes to get back to states this season and begin making that a tradition for the school.
Rich Little takes over head coaching duties for the departed Mark Sanford. Sanford left Covenant for the head coaching job at William Monroe. Little says that he believes that a team needs to run to develop a passing game, and that special teams is very important as well. He has high expectations for his squad in his first year at Covenant.
The Eagles lost some key players last season. Gone is Luke Heinsohn, who was arguably the best tailback in our area last year, but Covenant does return some very capable players. Lee Coppock returns for his second year at quarterback. The junior gained valuable experience last year, and looks to lead the team in 2009. Chris Shifflett will also play a key role. He'll take the field as a running back, looking to fill the shoes of Heinsohn, and also play linebacker on defense.
Numbers have always been an obstacle for Covenant to overcome, but the Eagles have about 40 players on the roster for the upcoming season. This shows tremendous growth from just three years ago, when only 13 players were on the team. Little attributes this Sanford's expansion of the program beyond just the high school level.
Covenant kicks off its season on August 28, when the Eagles travel to Norfolk Christian. Click on the above video link for a preview of the 2009 Covenant Eagles.