LEXINGTON, Ky (WTVQ) – Positive vibes…that’s been the constant motto for Frederick Douglass head football coach Nate McPeek and his program. While the decision to play this season has been up in the air, he’s made sure his team stays focused and positive.
“The back and forth and the emotion. this one’s playing and this one’s not and what week are they playing?” said Head Coach Nate McPeek. “Scheduling has been a nightmare. In our program here at Douglass we live out core values; we can only control what we control everyday. So for us that’s coming out here and controlling each day practice.”
The Broncos and the rest of Kentucky will play, but they have a tight window to prepare. From the time they got the green light to their first kickoff is three weeks, only a few days in pads and they’re playing north Hardin. A team who went undefeated all the way up until they lost in semi-State last season.
“Obviously, it’s not going to be great football early,” said McPeek. “North Hardin is going to be a really good opponent. They’ve got great athletes, Coach Thompson does a good job. In my opinion, other than our scrimmage against Trinity, they’re going to be one of the best teams to ever play here at Douglass.”
It’s not a secret, there at Douglass they have an embarrassment of riches, D-1 talent all over the field, but at most schools those guys would be the guy. Here at Douglass they’re one of several stars.They have to sacrifice.
“In our program you have to selfless if you want to win a championship,” says Coach McPeek. “For us, we’ve got a lot of good players and really honestly we’ve had good players the last three years. We’re going to do what we have to do to win games, but obviously we have to get the ball to our dudes and that’s a luxury for us. Script those plays to get those playmakers the ball.”
In sports it’s usually believed the under dog has nothing to lose, but if you’re stacked like Douglass most will expect you to win. No excuses. With that, comes some pressure but also a lot of people patting you on the back.
“We try to be humble and hungry. Honestly, they’re kids so they make mistakes,” said Coach McPeek. “That’s why we’re here as coaches, but to make sure we’re building upon the success we’ve had the last three years. Player-led teams are going to go to state championships, coach-led teams are not. That’s just a fact.”
It’s going to take a player-led team right through the Bronco’s schedule. We’ve talked about their first game against North Hardin. The broncos’ district isn’t forgiving with Scott county, Great crossing and Montgomery County then they close out the season with Lexington Catholic and St. Xavier.
“We’ve picked up really good opponents. Ones that will show our weaknesses for sure. I think hopefully that’ll help us down the road for the playoffs. Bringing in some good opponents. This is best schedule we’ve had at Douglass here in year four.”