The Winnebago Indians made a deep run in the Class 3A Football playoffs last year, reaching the quarterfinals before falling to Aurora-Christian. They're hoping to build on that success in 2013.
Winnebago returns quarterback Ryan Swigart, though he'll have a different cast of characters around him on the offensive side of the ball. Regardless, the returning players will have the experience of postseason success, and it should be to their benefit.
"It's huge. Just three extra weeks of practice you get to hone your skills," said head coach Mark Helm. "It's the excitement it brings with being in the playoffs. The morale helps as well."
Winnebago shared the Big Northern West title with Rockford Lutheran in 2012, and the conference should be very deep again this year. Between the Indians, Crusaders, Byron, Stillman Valley and Oregon, there are many teams that could emerge as the best in 2013.
"I think it gives you a lot of confidence when you make the playoffs because you're tested in this league, and I think our league's proven in the past that we play some pretty good football up here," Helm said. "The team that makes the least mistakes is probably going to win, because everyone's so closely tied in talent."
Winnebago kicks off its 2013 season on August 30th against Rockford Christian.
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