Patriots prepare for Akron

Published 8:21 pm Tuesday, September 1, 2009

LINDEN – Head coach Andro Williams knows what a potentially dangerous task awaits his team Friday night. On paper, the Patriots should likely be heavily favored against an Akron team that has seen its struggles in recent years and is still in the midst of learning a new scheme under a new head coach.

However, Williams also understands that the Rams are likely playing their last season due to an decision that will send make Akron a K-8 school.

“That fact means that the young men on the Akron football team have something for which to play,” Williams said. “They’ve always got some talented kids. They look like they are lining up better and doing better in the defensive backfield. They are playing a little more inspired. You can tell they are taking pride in what (new head coach Richard Bevill) is doing.”

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In order to avoid calamity in their region opener, Williams says his Patriots will need to avoid taking Akron lightly.

“We have to come out with a business-like attitude,” Williams explains, “and just do what we’ve got to do.”

While the Pats routed Cottage Hill 46-13 in the season opener, Williams says he would still like to see his team improve in certain areas. Most notably, Williams desires for his team to come out of the locker room with more intensity.

“I’ve got to do a better job of keeping us in stride so we can come out and play intense from the beginning,” Williams says.

As for the more tangible adjustments, the third-year head coach is emphasizing offensive line play during this week’s practice sessions.

“We’ve got to play lower,” Williams says. “We played high at times up front. We’ve got to do a better job at staying on blocks a little longer.”

The Patriots are also allotting more reps to younger players this week, in view of adding depth to the team.

“We need to get some other guys some reps in practice and make sure they know what we’re trying to do,” Williams says.

Linden hosts Akron Friday night. The game is scheduled to kick off at 7 p.m.