Caledonia High School was poised to make another run at a prep football state championship in 2014, but saw an undefeated season come to a frustrating end on a snowy afternoon against B.O.L.D. in the state semifinals.
The Warriors are expected to once again be among the state's top programs in Class AA play this season, but there are some visible changes.
Owen King will step in to play quarterback as a sophomore. He's a three-sport athlete that can throw well and has transitioned well into the starting role.
Caledonia also features a lot of speed this year instead of a big, heavy-set offensive line paving the way for the running game. Expect the Warriors to pass more often.
With a young quarterback and pass-happy offense comes the likelihood of turnovers though, a problem that haunted Caledonia at times last season. The defense knows it must step up while the offense tries to develop.
"As a defensive group we made a philosophy if something happens, Owen being a sophomore quarterback, we've got his back and we're going to be there for him to back him up and keep our backs against the wall for him," head coach Brent Schroeder said.
Senior defensive back Sean McGonigle said the objective is to create as many turnovers and sacks as possible, something this defensive group is already accustomed to.
"We already have the experience there so we're all fit for the situation and ready to play," he said.
Caledonia will open the season against La Crescent on Friday. It is the first game between the two teams in two decades.
Watch our special on area high school football teams with "Countdown To Kickoff", Thursday August 20, at 6:30 p.m. on WXOW.