Friday Night Football Preview: Northridge Raiders

The Northridge football team was one of the biggest surprises in 2013.

After winning just five total games over the previous three seasons, the Raiders rolled to a 7-2 regular season under first year coach Tom Wogoman. But the magical run ended in the first week of sectionals with a loss to Fort Wayne Dwenger.

"We turned the gear in on Monday and the question was 'what's this legacy going to look like?'" Wogoman explains. "The challenge has been to make the most productive eight months in the weight room that we could and turn that into a great June and July with summer conditioning."

Wogoman says it didn't take long for the players to buy into the system a year ago. Once they started winning, the confidence kept growing.

"Understanding the coach owns the program and the seniors own the team, and they own that locker room," Wogoman says. "This is a great group of seniors. They got a lot of experience playing on Friday nights. They were a big part of the transformation as far as getting things in the right direction that we wanted to see."

Northridge has no intentions of being a one and done team. The Raiders return seven starters on offense and seven on defense making them one of the favorites to win the Northern Lakes Conference.

"What is the next step? Is it winning football games or fighting for championships? That's what we talk about doing right now," Wogoman says.

"You go into Northridge High School gymnasium and there is no banner of Northridge football. It's a big blank. That's our challenge to these guys. You want to be that first team to get the year on that banner to hang on there forever."

The quest for Northridge begins August 22nd against Adams.

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