GBT.org illustration/ KATE FERNANDEZ AND MAY LIN
Granite Bay High School is known for its programs, staff, students and of course, a successful football team.
In 2012, the Granite Bay Grizzlies won the state championships. This year, they are hoping to make it beyond playoffs. So far, the Granite Bay varsity football team is 2-3 in their league games and rank 101 in the state. They won two league games against Grant and Whitney which means as of now, they still have a chance.
Ryan Beidler is the offensive line coach for the GBHS Varsity football team and also a math teacher at Granite Bay.
“We play in one of the toughest leagues in California, if not the toughest league in Northern California,” Beidler said.
In order to fulfill their long-time dream, they must compete through a pretty hefty season. For their league, the first round of playoffs start on November 8th and are every Friday until November 22nd. If they can make it through the playoffs, they would go to the CIF Sac-Joaquin and then Nor-Cal Section Division I or Division II championship games. Only after that would be the final championship game be in sight.
Many players on the team have things that they would like to improve on going into playoffs and not just for themselves, but as a team.
Brent Evans is a senior at Granite Bay and plays tight end on the varsity football team. He said that so far this season, their toughest opponent has been themselves. It is the little things that end up hurting them later on, but he said that they are doing a good job of fixing their mistakes early on.
“I feel like we can definitely clean up some of the mistakes that have been plaguing us but I have been proud of our overall effort for the most part,” Evans said.
Moose Judd is also a senior at Granite Bay and plays defensive end on the varsity football team.
“We just have to improve both offensive and defensive, and be ready for each week as it comes,” Judd said.
With Granite Bay competing against over twenty different schools, the players find it important to work together as a team.
“Team unity is an all time high, and we’re currently working hard to keep it that way, and if we continue to do so, we will continue to compete,” Judd said.
Preparing for the next step doesn’t revolve only around the physical aspect; mentality is crucial as well.
“The most important thing we’ve learned this year is learning to play together. Most people think that if you have good players your team is automatically good, but that’s not the case,” Evans said. “You need to learn how to come together and play for one another, not with one another, and I feel like our team is definitely one of the closer teams in that area.”
Head Coach Jeffrey Evans believes that his team has had a hard time coming together and forming the tight bond that is needed to make a championship team.
“We need to find a way to come together and be able to trust one another. The bond of the players often outweighs and talent level discrepancies that may exist between different opponents,” Evans said. “If this group can find a way to come together, and I mean quickly, then we can beat any team that we play and make a run at a championship.”
Beidler finds that his players sometimes hype themselves up to a point where they psych themselves out. He is hoping that all goes well in the playoffs but there are always uncontrollable factors.
“We don’t want to go into the playoffs with a three game losing streak. It doesn’t say a whole lot about our team…We could be 4-6 and play a team that has only lost one game and it would be a mismatch sometimes,” said Beidler.
“Our mindset isn’t who do we play, it’s who plays us.” Evans said.