Vandals facing new challenges following last year’s historic season

Following one of the most successful campaigns in the history of the Van Vandal football program last season, a new slogan has been adopted for the 2017 varsity campaign.

“Be the Standard” is the rallying cry for this year’s team as the Vandals will try to duplicate or exceed a 12-2 overall finish in 2016 including the first trip to the state quarterfinals since the school won the state championship in 1979. Van won 12 games last season for only the third time in the history of the program.

“Standard is underlined,” emphasized Vandal head coach Jared Moffatt, who is entering his eighth season in Van with an overall record of 58-24. “What my hope is that we build on the success of last year’s team. We have been a perennial playoff qualifier. We have gone to the state playoffs every year since I have been here and we are seeking our tenth consecutive state playoff appearance overall. What we are looking for is being a state playoff contender. We are not satisfied with just qualifying for the playoffs. We want to make runs in the playoffs year in and year out. We are excited about what we accomplished last year. That now needs to be the standard. That is the challenge for this year’s team. Can we be that standard year in and year out? Our slogan is underlined because we will start the season with a blank, ‘Be the _________.’ We need a group of guys to step up in certain positions and we need that blank to be filled in a lot. This team has a great opportunity.”


In discussing his team for the upcoming season, which includes 23 returning lettermen, five offensive and five defensive starters, senior quarterback Garrett Moseley, a three-year starter, was mentioned first by Moffatt.

“I sleep a lot better knowing that Garrett is back as our quarterback,” pointed out Moffatt. “He is a three-year starter and he has been a tremendous player for the past two seasons. He is one of our team leaders. The quarterback position is so important on your football team. Vince Lombardi said the only thing wrong with football was that the quarterback was too important. Having Garrett back for his senior year is tremendous for us. Liam Nielson is our backup quarterback who served as our junior varsity quarterback last season. He is developing into a really good passing quarterback.”

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