Football: Tiger offense lets it fly at Dakota DomeFarmington head football coach Mark Froehling was pleased with the progress his spread offense made over the course of last season. Playing the pass-friendly style for the first time in Froehling’s 11th season, the traditionally run-heavy Tigers bounced back from back-to-back shutout losses in Weeks 3 and 4 by scoring 77 points over their final five games.
By: Matt Steichen, The Farmington Independent
Farmington head football coach Mark Froehling was pleased with the progress his spread offense made over the course of last season.
Playing the pass-friendly style for the first time in Froehling’s 11th season, the traditionally run-heavy Tigers bounced back from back-to-back shutout losses in Weeks 3 and 4 by scoring 77 points over their final five games. The team still finished 1-8 — its first one-win season since 1982 — but the new offense was able to build some momentum that Froehling said appeared to carry over into last week’s appearance at the Coyote Football Camp at the University of South Dakota in Vermillion.
“I thought we threw and caught the ball very well. We had very few dropped balls,” said Froehling, who returns junior quarterback Darren Beenken, a 900-yard passer last year as a sophomore. “We had a lot of good completions and were able to move the ball pretty well throwing the football.”
There’s more work to be done in the running game where the Tigers struggled to move the ball consistently in their three scrimmages against Harrisburg (S.D), Sioux Falls Washington and Rapid City Central.
“We graduated our whole line from last year and lost our starting tailback, so we’re going to have to work on that,” Froehling said. “It takes some time and coordination, so it will be a continued learning process to improve that.”
The Tigers departed for their 11th South Dakota football camp last Monday morning. The team practiced and scrimmaged on Monday, then ran through individual workouts by position with Coyote coaches on Tuesday before playing another scrimmage. The team then competed in the King of the Hill competition, which rotates teams on and off the field after each play for an hour. If the offense gains five yards, it stays on the field. If the defense gets a stop, it gets to stay on the field.
“We had some success in the King of the Hill competition,” Froehling said. “It creates some pretty intense situations where everything is on the line for one play. It’s a good, fun competition.”
The camp wrapped up with another practice and one final scrimmage before the bus ride home on Wednesday night. Players will continue working together in daily weight-training and three more weeks of a Sunday night 7-on-7 league in Eagan before official practice gets under way with the annual Iron Man Competition Aug. 15 at Farmington High School.
“I thought it was a good, successful camp,” Froehling said. “We had the opportunity to practice and scrimmage a number of different teams and play in some game-type situations. We improved as we were out there and a lot of young kids who will be first-time players on Friday nights got a lot of reps. It was some good experience for the kids before the fall comes.”
The Tigers open the regular season Friday, Sept. 2, with a road game at Rochester Mayo. Their Missota Conference slate begins the following Friday at Red Wing.