CAYUGA, Ind. — A disheartening 13 years might have seemed like an eternity to the faithful fans of the North Vermillion Falcons. The football program went nearly a decade and a half without a winning season until coach Brian Crabtree took over in 2012.
The 180-degree shift has helped the Falcons gain confidence and has built a foundation for future teams. But the future of the program might feel as though it has its hands full in attempting to carry out the Falcons’ newfound winning tradition.
Class A No. 2 North Vermillion defeated Seeger 51-6 on Friday to complete the program’s second consecutive undefeated regular season and second straight Wabash River Conference title. It was also the team’s 19th straight regular season win.
“I think that anytime you have success it kind of builds momentum,” Crabtree said. “You can use it to continue to elevate the program. I think the big part of carrying on tradition is that our guys that are underclassmen continue to pick up the slack from the senior class as it moves on. We’ve had some great senior leadership. You don’t have the success by accident. You have great kids that get you there.”
The Falcons have defeated all 19 opponents by an average of 51.3-9.8. But through it all, they have remained humble and focused.
“Freshmen and sophomore years were tough,” North Vermillion senior quarterback Brayden Woodard said. “We’ve been on both sides of the totem pole. That’s why we’re level headed.”
Only seven seniors are listed on the roster, but they remember all-too well the seasons that came prior to the success. There’s no doubt they enjoy being on the winning side of the scoreboard, but they are staying hungry and focused with larger goals in mind.
They credit years of hard work and a solid youth program for helping build the foundation for success.