Connellsville's Knopsnider will split time on both sides of ball this season
TribLIVE Sports Videos
Dylan Knopsnider knows if the Connellsville football team is to be successful, there has to be a lot of leadership.
In his senior season, Knopsnider is intent on being a leader.
“This year, I understand what I have to do,” Knopsnider said. “I had some good, strong leaders ahead of me, and they showed me what to do.”
Knopsnider will be a three-year starter on defense but will also be making his presence felt as a running back.
“On offense, he will get a significant amount of touches,” Falcons coach Dave McDonald said. “Defensively, we expect a lot. As a strong safety, we expect him to cover, and he has to be an edge presence and be physical.”
Knopsnider will be tasked with a number of responsibilities, which is fine with him.
“It puts pressure on you, but I know I can do it and I'm ready to step up,” Knopsnider said. “I like the pressure and knowing that if I don't do my job, it can be a big play for the other team.”
Knopsnider's faith in his abilities to lead and play well aren't lacking, which is important for a team that will rely on experienced veterans to shine.
“I think he has always had the capabilities, and I think now he is confident,” McDonald said. “He is the biggest and strongest he's ever been. Right now, he's just playing, and that allows his natural abilities to come out. I've always looked at him as being a very good player, and now he is really coming into his own.”
Knopsnider has played baseball and basketball at Connellsville but is focused on his football career. His dedication has shown.
“Dylan has really worked hard this offseason, and it is starting to show with the camp that he had,” McDonald said.
“He has stepped up into a leadership role and taken care of his responsibilities. He is paying attention to detail, and he is executing at a high level on both sides of the ball.”
Knopsnider hopes to parlay a strong senior season into the opportunity to play football in college.
“I want to have a good senior season and have colleges look at me,” Knopsnider said. “I want to get some offers so I can play at the next level.”
As for the team, he is optimistic this can be a good season.
“I believe the team can do well,” Knopsnider said. “We just have to play together, know our roles and do our jobs.”
Knopsnider and the Falcons open the season Friday with a Quad East game at McKeesport.
Jason Black is the local sports editor of the Daily Courier. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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.
- WPIAL football playoff clinchings
- Kittanning routs Ford City in rivalry’s final game
- Serra Catholic snaps 28-game losing streak with 38-36 victory over Wilkinsburg
- Central Valley gains measure of revenge on No. 1 West Allegheny
- Connellsville reaches playoff despite blowout loss
- West Shamokin dominates Deer Lakes
- After sluggish 1st half, McKeesport rolls past Kiski Area
- Clairton runs past Leechburg for PIAA record
- Valley, Freeport provide special moment for Clarke in regular-season finale
- No. 4 Highlands wraps up perfect regular season
- Apollo-Ridge fine-tunes for playoffs with 64-20 victory over Burrell