Kennedy hoping to build off undefeated regular season in 2021

Published: Aug. 24, 2022 at 7:20 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - After coming just one win short of the UNI Dome, the Cougars have plenty of talent coming back.

“We have a veteran defense and we have good senior leadership,” said Kennedy head coach Brian White. “Out junior class has only lost one game in their entire careers.”

The Cougars have a lot young talent coming into starting roles this season. It all starts with sophomore quarterback Vincenzo Gianforte.

“He was born to be in this position,” White said. “He is mature beyond his sophomore year.”

“He is only 14 right now, he’s going to be 13 for the first three games, pretty crazy,” said senior linebacker/offensive lineman Asher Smith. “He’s going to surprise some people.”

He has some pretty dynamic guys to throw the ball to, like Cyrus Courtney, who - as a sophomore - caught two passes both for touchdowns.

The Cougars have athletes all over the field, like Dom Mann, who, despite being born with only one hand, can makes plus on offense, defense and special teams.

“He’s a heck of an athlete,” White said. “He will take some snaps (at quarterback), he will land up on the slot, sometimes in the backfield when he’s not a quarterback. We will move him around. When you have that kind of speed you need to find a way to utilize it.”

The Cougars ran the table in the regular season in 2021, so the program has a lot of confidence.

“A lot of people like to talk about last year,” said Smith. “But I think this year we’re going to work to continue the success we’ve had in the last decade.”

“I think the success we’ve had the last eight years that I’ve been here you can see it out in the field right now with our numbers,” White said. “A lot of people have numbers that are going down right now, our are going up. We ran out of helmets. We had to scramble to find helmets for kids this year!”