Coach: Kelly Murphy, first year.
2007 record: 7-4 (4-2 Southwest).
Returning starters: Four offense, three defense.
Top players: OT/DT Nate Holloway (Sr.); RB/DB Jacques Adams (Sr.); FB/LB Tom Krysztof (Sr.); G/DT Steve Haunga (Sr.); WR/DB Keenan Sanders (Sr.); WR/DB Jeff Fajardo (Sr.); QB/DB Anton Stallworth (Jr.).
Outlook: The Grizzlies are transitioning from a spread offense to a more conventional run-based offense and have only four returning starters on offense.
Murphy said the competition to fill in the remaining spots has been good.
“We’re about two or three deep at every spot,” Murphy said. “We’re going to play kids on both sides of the ball. We’ll put the best 11 athletes out on offense and the best 11 on defense.”
Holloway (6-4, 320 pounds) anchors both the offensive and defensive lines, which Murphy said are the strength of the team. The offensive line is learning a new blocking scheme, but Murphy is pleased with the progress.
“The kids want to get over the hump in the playoffs, but we have to get there first,” he said.