McGuffey enters season with new coach, players, conference
TribLIVE Sports Videos
McGuffey hired Ed Dalton to revive a near comatose football program over the offseason, and the new coach and athletic director has his work cut out for him.
Dalton, who was the coach at Trinity for 12 years, isn't the only new guy this summer.
The Highlanders entered training camp with roughly 45 players on their roster, 30 of which had never played football before this season.
“We went and recruited kids in our school that were great athletes but weren't playing football for whatever reason,” Dalton said. “Wrestlers, basketball players, baseball players, and the equation for us is to turn that athletic potential into football players.”
Dalton and his coaching staff will try to implement a Multiple-I system offensively, and continue to preach a versatile 4-3 defense that is capable of looking like a 50 or a 4-4 set depending on personnel.
“I brought five of my former coaches at Trinity with me, and we kept several of the better coaches on staff here, so we are all on the same page with what we are looking to do,” Dalton said.
The problem may be getting a team of young players with only three returning offensive starters on that page. Brent Balarczyk will undoubtedly play a major leadership role as a two-year starter at fullback and middle linebacker.
Experience is relative on this roster. Sophomore quarterback Nate Whipkey started one game in 2011 — one game more than 30 of his teammates have seen from the sidelines.
“Our theme this season is we don't have time,” Dalton said. “Can we get it going right now? Can we put in the work required to bring our skill levels up to where we can be effective right now? Athletically, the parts are there, but we just won't know if it's there from a football standpoint until we get (playing).”
McGuffey also will face an unknown with its opponents, as it dropped down from the Class AAA Big Eight Conference and joined the talented Class AA Century Conference.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- High school notebook: Thomas Jefferson, Clairton head into enemy territory
- Aliquippa wins 16th WPIAL title, ends South Fayette’s 44-game winning streak
- Central Catholic wins 5th WPIAL football title
- Frazier football well represented in all-conference honors
- Thomas Jefferson uses defense, running game to capture WPIAL title
- WPIAL Class AAAA final preview: Penn-Trafford looking to reverse trend of playoff losses to Central Catholic
- WPIAL Class AAAA notes: P-T unable to snap playoff skid vs. Central Catholic
- WPIAL Class AAA notes: Title games draw 16,500 to Heinz Field
- Clairton captures 12th WPIAL football championship
- WPIAL Class AA notes: South Fayette’s Saxton sets WPIAL finals record
- WPIAL Class AAA final preview: Big-play passing attack paying off for defending WPIAL champion Central Valley