Boylan looks to keep train rolling with new look Titans

Published: Aug. 25, 2021 at 7:42 PM CDT
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - Boylan has consistently been one of the schools in the upper echelon of the NIC-10. The Titans didn’t get a chance to defend their conference championship in the spring. However, Boylan has put that in the past and looks forward to a regular fall season.

“Everybody wants to live up to that standard. That’s a good thing.”

The Titan way. It’s a tradition passed down from senior class to senior class.

“I hope to take them under my wing, me and (Joey) Appino, and just show them the real Boylan way and how to play Boylan football,” said senior Tyler Mathias.

“Part of our excellence over the years has been one group of seniors handing it off to the following group of seniors,” explained head coach John Cacciatore. “This group of seniors has been no different.”

Cacciatore is back after a shortened 3-0 season that flashed serious potential. But he has put the spring behind him to focus on what’s next.

“We got over it and that part of the residue of last season is no longer on our minds this season.”

For a team that loses a couple of big time playmakers in Benny Jass and Xavier Bryant, and experience on the line, expectations remain high.

“We do have a lot of young kids, but we have a lot of young kids that no one knows about that are coming up and showing out at practice,” said Mathias. “They’re really going to show people this year what they can do.”

“It doesn’t matter who’s in those shoes before you, do your job,” explained Cacciatore. “You are part of a group of 11. You are one of 11 out there. If they can buy into that, and I think they have, then it doesn’t matter who the middle linebacker is or who the nose guard is. There’s ten other guys out there besides them doing their job, then collectively they become pretty good.”

A mindset that has taken Boylan to the playoffs in three of the last four seasons.

“Hard work is what wins games. If you come out to practice flat, you’re going to come out to the game flat,” said Appino. “If you come out working hard, you’re going to be ready for games.”

But while the goal is to win state, the Titans aren’t looking past their week one opponent.

“We haven’t had a real game yet. I think Jefferson is going to be a big eye opener for us.”

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