Ryan McAleenan is a returning starting linebacker and one of the team captains this season for the Golden Knights.
Patch: How does the team look with three weeks before the start of the season?
Ryan McAleenan: We’re looking very strong on both offense and defense. We’re very solid.
Patch: What do you think the strengths are of this team?
McAleenan: We have a lot of experience and we’re all motivated. We want to win a lot of games this year.
Patch: How close is the team from being where it wants to be for the first game of the season?
McAleenan: That’s hard to say. I think we’re close, but we need to continue working. We need to work as hard as we can to get as far as we can.
Patch: Do you feel like everyone understands their assignments?
McAleenan: Most of the people are returning (and) have started and Jared (Leibowitz) is doing an awesome job. I think we’re going to do very well in the first game.
Patch: Because you have a lot of returners, do you think the confidence level is higher than it would be for most teams?
McAleenan: We’re confident, but not overconfident. We’re not going to overlook any teams. We’re still going to play hard.
Grbavac Draws Interest
St. Francis center Kristion Grbavac said he has received recruiting interest from the University of San Diego, San Jose State and Columbia among others. At 6-foot-2, 260 pounds, more schools could jump into the mix.
Anderson, McAleenan Also Garner Interest
Middle linebacker Luke Anderson said several Ivy League schools have expressed interest in as well as some smaller private universities. Outside linebacker Ryan McAleenan says UC Davis as well as a few Ivy League schools have shown interest in him.
No Break for Golden Knights
While the CIF has a mandated three-week dead period in which players and coaches cannot work together, student-athletes can still work out and many of the Golden Knights did just that.
“A lot of us lifted and ran,” McAleenan said.
Anderson said some chose to work out in another way.
“We did some speed training.”
Bonds On Team Outlook
Head coach Jim Bonds said that the goals of the program remain the same every season. He said this year’s team returns 17 seniors who started for either all or part of last season.
“Our number one goal is to have a winning season and from there we want to ensure a playoff berth,” Bonds said. “Once we ensure that, we want to be Mission League champions and from there we want to be CIF champions. Those are our goals going into every season. If he stay healthy I think we have a great shot.”