2021 36 Blitz: Frederick Douglass Broncos

LEXINGTON, Ky (WTVQ) – The success the Frederick Douglass Broncos have experienced over the last four years has been nearly unmatched. The one thing that’s been elusive? A state title. Last season, they had another chance slip away with a loss to Owensboro High School in semi-state.

“I mean obviously you learn by failure a lot of ways,” says Head Coach Nathan McPeek. “Especially in this game and you know over the last four years we’ve been fortunate enough to be in those big situations in those big games and obviously we haven’t gotten the ultimate prize yet, but I think you learn a lot about your team and the guys who are returning in how you act after the fact.”

After spotting the Owensboro Red Devils 21 points last season in semi-state, Frederick would come roaring back. They’d actually take a 27-21 lead with about 5 minutes to go, but a miss a go-ahead field goal with under a minute to go in the game.

“Last year was a tough loss, but we’re coming stronger and just ready to play and a lot of people are hungry and just ready to get what we’ve been working hard to get,” said senior wide receiver Dane Key.

To achieve that success, the Broncos believe first you need to figure out what caused the failure.

“Well this year we really just tried to focus on what’s the reasons why we lost,” says senior linebacker Caden Johnson. “What’s the reasons of building up to the loss. Because throughout the week we really had a good week of practice, but when it got time to play we really didn’t have as much energy as we needed to and the mental focus that we needed to have going into a semifinals game to make the state championship. So every day we try to teach the little things.”

As the Broncos turn the page to this season, Head Coach Nathan McPeek hopes to continue current success.

“42 wins in 4 years doesn’t happen often in programs, especially with four years of existence,” says McPeek. “So we want to keep that train rolling.”

Headed into year 5 of being a program, if you play Frederick Douglass on a Friday night, you know what’s coming. You’re going to play a group of the state’s most talented players all on the same team. And that creates a target on your back, but the Broncos love that and they say bring it on.”

“We just come out here every day knowing we have a target on our back,” says Johnson. “Really every season, but this season is really big because a lot of people really developed around the city, especially around the state so we always develop everyday, but knowing that we all have a target on our back we have to work ten times harder. And we really just have to come in everyday knowing that people are head hunting us and can’t let them take our heads off at all.”

The Broncos in general have a target, but if there’s one player who has it, then it’s senior wide receiver Dane Key. The state’s second-ranked recruit.

“I love that just because we got a lot of threats on the team and if they try to double me, triple me whatever they try to do we got a lot of other teammates on my team that are gonna make plays,” says Key.

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