KINGSTON, Ill. (WTVO/WQRF) — Every football coach has his own way of preparing his team for the upcoming season. Genoa-Kingston coach Chad Wilmarth likes to have his guys get in touch with nature.
On the north edge of Kingston off East Five Points Road is the Walcamp Retreat Center. It’s a wooded area with trails, a campground and recreation areas, and two huge fields perfect for football. The Cogs spent the first three days and two nights of their week here.
Head coach Chad Wilmarth likes the seclusion. “It gets us away from that normal school environment. We’re out here, we’re in the woods in the middle of nowhere and we just get to focus on us.”
“We love it out here!, said Genoa-Kingston two-way lineman Will Butterfield. “It’s great team-bonding. I feel like we’ve become much closer as a team.”
“This year swimming was a big highlight because we played like a huge Rugby game in the pond and the coaches were in on it. It was a good time,” said tight end/linebacker Logan Kribs.
Who can argue with the results. The Cogs have made the playoffs the last two years since Wilmarth took over as head coach posting back-to-back 8-3 records. With nine starters back on offense and eight back on defense it should surprise no one if the Cogs enjoy another playoff season.
“We’ve got really high expectations this year,” said Butterfield.
Senior Justin Peters is back as the Cog’s quarterback. He was named second team All-Big Northern Conference last year. Will Franson is back at running back and the Cogs return their entire starting offensive line.
“Last year we had an all-junior line, so we’re really experienced. We know what we’re doing,” said Butterfield.
On defense linebackers Logan Kribs, Sam Rice and Franson all return as starters. This is a defense that gave up the second fewest points in the conference last year.
“We set our goals a couple nights ago and one of our goals was a defensive goal that we have in mind that we think we can accomplish it,” said Kribs.
Wilmarth likes the effort his players put forth to prepare for this season.
“Our seniors have really dedicated themselves. We’ve been trying for a sense of urgency. Let’s get after it. Leave nothing out on the practice field.eave nothing in the weight room and try to have the idea to get one percent better every day.”