TROY, Texas — The Troy Trojans enter year two under Head Coach Stephen Hermesmeyer while still licking their wounds from a difficult 2-8 season. The road to the playoffs does not get easier in 2022.
However, the Trojans could be poised for a breakout year. Multiple coaches told the 25 Sports team Troy was one of the most improved teams they saw in 2021.
The numbers back that statement up: in their first five games, Troy was outscored by 172 points. In their final five, they won two games, and their combined point margin was only 29 points.
"We were in the ballgame against Cameron midway through the third quarter, and then we let it get away from us," Hermesmeyer said. "We were in the ballgame against Rockdale and had a chance to win it on the last play of the game, but we didn't get it done. And then Little River, who was a really good ball team, we had 'em 17-17 in the third quarter and then again couldn't finish. So, we were in some ballgames against some really good teams and didn't know how to finish. We're hoping we get over the hump this year."
Troy returns 12 starters, six on each side of the ball. The Trojans will rely on their ground game once again, with a dynamic duo in the backfield. Steve Jackson and Korey Gibson will serve as a two-headed monster, carrying the load on the ground.
Hermesmeyer also introduced a new black-shirt tradition at Trojan practices. He has started giving black jerseys to the starting 11 players on defense, encouraging competition and reward in practice.
One major question mark comes on the offensive and defensive lines, where the Trojans will have to find replacements for multiple graduating seniors. Hermesmeyer believes the underclassmen are stepping up to the occasion.
"I don't know if its buy-in," he said. "I think they bought in pretty much last year. I think just the experience of understanding what we're trying to do, the terminolog, understanding how we conduct our practices, the names of drills... Everything's just a little more familiar. So, I would say that we are a little more familiar with what we're doing now that what we were a year ago."
2022 FOOTBALL SCHEDULE:
8/26 vs Whitney 7:30
9/2 at Lexington 7:30
9/9 vs Rogers 7:30
9/16 at Early 7:30
9/23 vs Little River Academy* 7:30
9/30 at McGregor* 7:30
10/7 vs Rockdale* 7:30
10/14 at Franklin* 7:30
10/28 vs Lorena* 7:30
11/4 at Cameron Yoe* 7:30
Click here for more 2022 season previews.