Countdown to kickoff: Young J-Hawks look to build in 2023

Jefferson opens their season away at Hononegah on August 25th
Published: Aug. 24, 2023 at 8:39 PM CDT
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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) - The J-Hawks have entered a new era as Jake Arnold departs after a 5-26 record during his four years at the helm. Jefferson welcomes Cody Casazza as the new head coach.

The red and gold are looking to continue their upward climb, starting from when they went 0-9 in 2021. Then in 2022, the team moved up to 2-7 and also had three one-possession losses. But with the way this year’s roster looks, there’s a lot of optimism in building toward the future.

Adjusting to the new coaching staff was difficult for the coaches as well as the players. “In the beginning, we had a little bit of a rough time just getting used to everything new, coaching staff,” Senior Sebastian Bracius says, “But then like we got used to them and we feel like we’re having a good year.”

And the coaches had to work at establishing team chemistry as well, “The adjustment has been a difficult one just because as a coach you have a standard you try to meet and you’re not really willing to compromise it,” Casazza says, “And our kids have done a really nice job the ones that we have here”.

The J-Hawks have a young team. “We only have four seniors so we have a heavy junior and sophomore class,” Casazza said.