(WTRF) — Justin Kropka, who spent 13 years as the head coach at Harrison Central, takes over the Monarch program after spending the last three years as an assistant at Wheeling University. While his long term goal is to build a solid program he also has an immediate goal.
” I want to get as good as we can and get as many wins for our seniors because they don’t get another shot this is it for them so I want accelerate the learning curve and be as competitive as we can be for our senior group.”Coach Justin Kropka
Offensively, Kropka says the line is the most advanced right now. They are a veteran group with junior Cole Porter at right tackle, senior Ethan Neely at right guard , senior Alex Francis at center either junior Bryce Cool or Jase Riding at left guard and senior Grant Neiswonger at left tackle. Senior Jarod Kirkes is the tight end. Junior Jacob Coffield with lead the unit at quarterback he’s joined Ben McCardle at tailback and Nate Menendez at fullback. At receiver look for juniors Braden and Brennan Sobutka senior Coda Morse and sophomore DeMario White.
” We’re getting there, like I said every day is seems like the first day sometimes and every time we take a step forward seems like we take a step back were just treading water right now but eventually I think we’ll get there.”Coach Justin Kropka
Defensively, Kropka says it’s very similar to his offense with Vets inside and younger players outside. Kirkes and Neely are the ends. The tackles are Neiswonger and senior Brayden Hagadorn. The linebackers are McCardle and Menendez. With Coffield and junior Cody Hartman at outside backers and senior Noah Beckett at safety.
” We’re trying to teach them Latin when they know Spanish you know so it’s verbiage and keys and stuff like that are all different but I think our inside guys again because of their experience have taken to it a little faster.”Coach Justin Kropka
Kropka will open his John Marshall career when the Monarchs visit University on the 27th