“Defensively we will be very young, but we do have some ability and some athletes who are confident in what they can do and will play with effort and enthusiasm,” Comer said.
On special teams, junior all-stater Brandon Dowers returns at placekicker and Nathan Ramsey will again handle punts.
Brownsburg, which will play on a new turf field in a redone home stadium, won the Hoosier Crossroads Conference championship outright last year after tying for it the previous season.
“The HCC is a meat grinder,” Comer said. “It does not matter who you play or where you play them, it will be a difficult ball game. There are great athletes at every school and the teams are very well coached.”
At 7-3 last season, the Warriors claimed a share of the Sagamore Conference crown and finished with the program’s best record since its run to regionals in 2007.
“We have seen our program grow leaps and bounds in the direction we were hoping,” third-year Danville coach Russ Sumner said. “Competing for a conference title is now an expectation instead of a hope. Our weight room participation is one area that has dramatically improved and that directly translates into better performance on the field.”
After graduating 20 seniors, Danville has just eight this year, but Sumner feels his system of personnel rotation will help fill the void.
“We will be a young team this year, but we will have quite a bit of experience back because we two-platoon,” Sumner said. “That provides us with quite a few players who saw significant playing time as sophomores last year. We will have the same scenario again with several sophomores stepping into starting positions.”
While now the smallest school in Class 4A, Danville posted a 3A-best 3,139 rushing yards last year, 1,246 of which came from returning senior fullback Autry Pickens, who also scored 17 TDs.