While the Trinity football season has not gone as intended, putting up 538 yards of total offense and over 50 points on the board was certainly a great ending for the teamâ€™s seniors in their final home game. The Tigers piled it on the opposition during their 58-20 win over Southwestern University on Senior Day, last Saturday, Nov. 9.
While this win was productive, the team will not be reaching the playoffs, but they plan to use this as fuel for their season finale and next season.
â€œTrinity football continues to carry an expectation of competing for conference and playing in the postseason. We are disappointed we didnâ€™t get there this season, but we are working to finish the season on a win so we can carry that momentum into the offseason and next fall,â€ said special teams coordinator Brant McAdams.
Some of the players, like sophomore quarterback Stephen Smith have specific goals they want to achieve.
â€œGoals this offseason are to understand the game better in the film room, build a better relationship with some of my receivers and to become faster,â€ Smith said.
Smith had a good home finale with 260 passing yards and three touchdowns through the air.
Not only do players have individual goals for the offseason, but as sophomore wide receiver Chaz Davis says there are team goals as well.
â€œAs a team, we pride ourselves on avoiding the tendency of being â€˜repeat offendersâ€™. Whether that be on or off of the field. We work to minimize error and maximize effort. Next season will be one filled with passion and hunger, both from a coaching and playersâ€™ standpoint. Being content does not exist in our program and Iâ€™m certain that it will not change. The time in the offseason will allow us the opportunity to put together a more sound, cohesive unit that we will demonstrate next season with great success,â€ Davis said.
The team still had some important achievements in the victory over Southwestern. Senior running back Desmond King had 121 rushing yards and two touchdowns in his final home game to become the 22nd running back in school history to reach 1,000 yards.
For his effort, King was named the SCAC offensive player of the week. First-year linebacker Justin Turner took home the conferenceâ€™s defensive player of the week award. Turner had two tackles and two fumble recoveries, including one returned for a touchdown, during the victory.
Junior offensive lineman Jonathan Prescott was also honored this week with a spot on the Capital One Academic NCAA Division III All-District 8 Football First Team.
The Tigers were losing to Southwestern 13-6 early in the second quarter, but the first of Kingâ€™s two touchdowns evened the score and a touchdown pass from Smith to senior wide receiver Weslyn Wagner gave Trinity the lead with less than a minute left in the first half. The Tigers never looked back, outscoring Southwestern 38-7 in the second half. The Southwestern Pirates are now 0-9 on the season.
After the offseason, however, there is always next season and the program has very high expectations that any mistakes this year will not happen again and Trinity will be on its way back to the top next year.
â€œItâ€™s only customary that the Tiger football team set the expectations high for next season. Weâ€™ll surely be putting in the dedication and hard work necessary to get Trinity Universityâ€™s football team back into the talk among the top contenders. Both players and coaches will expect nothing less than maximum efforts as weâ€™ve all bought into the well-established Trinity football program,â€ said Davis.
The Tigers will finish off this season with a trip to face Austin College at 1 p.m. tomorrow. Trinity beat Austin College 26-3 at home on Saturday, Sept. 28. A victory would clinch a winning season for the Tigers despite the disappointment of not reaching the postseason.
Time will tell whether next season is a successful one or not, but it seems as though the football team will be putting in the effort to get there and has a good shot to achieve the goals they have set.