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Maple Grove Voice

Who Are These Guys? Maple Grove Crimson Football Players Ready to Answer

Aug 30, 2017 03:30PM ● By Doug Erlien
The 2017 Maple Grove Crimson football team might not have the notable names as previous teams. No problem for this group. They are ready to stand and make their own mark.

“I told them there’s going to be a lot of people who have doubts about them because obviously we’ve lost some big names and things like that and people don’t know who to circle on our roster,” Head Coach Matt Lombardi said. “What’s going to make you special? I challenged them and I think that’s something as coaches that’s not our job to give them. It’s theirs to create and find out themselves."

Curtis Haugen, who played a big part in the Crimson defense last season, will switch sides of the ball and take over the quarterback position leading the way for the offense. Defensively, many starters return including last year’s defensive team MVP, Jake Hanson.  

“I think this is going to be a team that is the sum of its parts,” Lombardi said. “In previous years we’ve had names that people recognize and I think there’s going to be a lot of people going to games and having to look at their program wondering who everyone is. I think that’s kind of fun and hopefully as Maple Grove Crimson we’ll be a good team.”

As usual, the schedule is a grind. The Crimson open with rival Osseo and then navigate through arguably the toughest schedule in high school football. With an improved Edina program led by former Osseo head coach Derrin Lamker, a Wayzata team coached by former Maple Grove Activities Director Lambert Brown along with Burnsville and Lakeville North on the road and home games against Prior Lake and perennial powerhouse Eden Prairie, there is no question that Lombardi’s team will be battle tested come playoff time.

Before any of those moments, is the first two weeks, a period of time to prepare mentally and physically for the upcoming season.

“No coach thinks they look good after the first day,” Lombardi said. “I think just the excitement means it’s time."

Schedule:

Thursday, August 31- Osseo - 7 p.m.
Friday, September 8- Prior Lake - 7 p.m.
Friday, September 15- @ Minnetonka - 7 p.m.
Friday, September 22 - @ Burnsville - 7 p.m.
Thursday, September 28 - Eden Prairie - 7 p.m.
Friday, October 6 - @ Lakeville North - 7 p.m.
Friday, October 13 - Edina (Homecoming) - 7 p.m.
Wednesday, October 18- @ Wayzata - 7 p.m.

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