If you’ve chosen to dismiss the Richmond Hill High School football team as Region 3-AAA contenders for next season, you may want to take another look.
Granted, the team has lost more than their fair share of games in the last several years, but Monday’s practice, which was the kick-off of spring training, showed signs of the Wildcats entering a new era. Not the least of which was the debut of offensive coordinator Lyman Guy, who as a head coach led Robert Toombs Christian Academy to a pair of Georgia Independent School Association titles.
Guy has also won numerous region titles as well as being named Coach of the Year at a number of levels.
Guy comes to RHHS from Wayne County High School, but also has coached for Calvary and Vidalia High School. Guy saw the most success during his eight-year run as head coach of RTCA in Lyons. Guy also is a certified speed and strength trainer and has instructed numerous football combines, including for the University of Georgia.Wildcat head coach Brian Brocato said he has been lobbying for a couple years now to bring in Guy and his arrival is one of several factors that are coming together to turn things around for his team. Guy said the Wildcats are on the verge of greatness.
"We have all the dynamics to lay a great foundation," he said. "Richmond Hill High School and its community have all the dynamics to build a great program of prominence. I’ve done a lot of research and studied a lot of great programs – not on a state level, but a national level. They all sit on the outskirts of a metro area, such as Savannah; they have a strong academic program and a good financial backing in the community to help you with your athletic programs."
Lyman said he is not intimidated by the state powerhouses that stand before them in the current Region 3-AAA line-up. He said the tough competition will "just raise our level of play. Our biggest opponent is us and that’s what we’re going to concentrate on. If we take care of us, whoever is lined up on Friday night will be less of an obstacle."
Brocato said the Wildcats will continue to use the spread offense. In fact, that is Lyman’s specialty - there will just be a few adjustments made to it.
Brocato acknowledged that four of his players are headed to the state playoffs for track, which goes to show the level of speed that the 2009-2010 Wildcats will have in their arsenal.
"We’re going to have a lot more speed this year," Brocato said. "We just need to work on execution. The kids decided, when I met with the captains (Albert Reddick, Zach Denney, Matt Wyatt and Zach Broome), that we need to change our attitudes a bit. Everyone has bought into it and I’m looking for some good things for the next year."
Brocato spoke of the many former RHMS region champions that are now at the sophomore level. He said "success breeds success" and they are ready to reclaim some of that former glory – "you can see it in their attitudes in the locker room."
Brocato said quarterback Zach Broome, who saw success early last season before being sidelined with an injury, is healthy and "looking good in practice thus far." Broome, Denney and Wyatt are among those who have just finished with honors at numerous combines. Brocato has a full schedule lined up as he looks toward off-season training, including passing leagues, tournaments and camps.
Coaches Rick Bond, Robbie Flanders and Tony Dragon are back to support the team as they head into summer. Former offensive coordinator Zach Grage is moving to Atlanta.