FLORENCE, Ala. (WAFF) - It’s year three for Will Hester and the Florence Falcons. The 2020 season feels like the season everything comes together for the 7A program.
“Everybody runs the same plays, everybody’s defense is similar, and there’s no magic bean when it comes to football,” Hester said. “I think it’s all about building relationships with the kids building that culture with your program.”
The Falcons must replace one of the best players in the state in Dee Beckwith. Even without Beckwith, the Falcons are loaded with veteran players and leadership.
“We’re blessed with 24 phenomenal senior leaders who led us through the quarantine, making sure that they weren’t sitting on the couch and doing those kinds of things. I can’t say enough about those seniors have showed up and led this football team. It’s great as a coach that you don’t always have to be that voice. Those seniors know what you expect from them, and kind of how the program should be run, and they’re able to lead that locker room.”
The Falcons play in the highest classification in the state, meaning no Friday nights off. That was the appeal to Hester, navigating elite football, to try and become a force in the state.
“The whole purpose of taking this job and moving to Alabama was to coach against the very best players in the country,” Hester added. “You’re gonna see an SEC caliber lineman week in and week out in (Class) 7A. We want to be that caliber team here in the North. So obviously, our kids know where the bar is set and how to get there.”