LISLE – There will be several new faces on the offensive side of the ball for Benet this season, including a new quarterback. Tyler Takahashi, however, is back for his second season as a starter along the offensive line and offers continuity at an important position. Takahashi spoke with Suburban Life sports editor Jason Rossi about his role on the team, helping out the new QB and how the end to last season is impacting this one.
Rossi: How have practices been going so far?
Takahashi: It's been great. I'm really confident. Our line play has been great. Last year, we mixed it up a lot and threw in a lot of new people, and this year we have a solid group and a lot of good chemistry.
Rossi: What your role on this team?
Takahashi: I take responsibility for the whole O-line — I'm not much of a D-line player — but anything that has to do with the O-line I pretty much take responsibility for. Pretty much everything that goes on up front.
Rossi: The team has a new quarterback this season. What do you tell him to make sure he has a smooth adjustment to varsity?
Takahashi: Just tell him to be confident. That's the main thing because if you lose confidence you don't play as well, and I think he's done a really good job. He's been confident back there. He's been calling out plays and he's been making good reads.
Rossi: What goals have you discussed as a team?
Takahashi: Definitely get to state and win it. I think we can do it. I'm excited.
Rossi: Is the way last season ended, with four straight losses, motivation for this season?
Takahashi: Definitely. It makes us more committed to finish through the season. Last year we got on that streak and kept losing, but this year we want to go the whole way through.
Rossi: Do you think the offense is ahead of where it was at this time last year?
Takahashi: Yeah, definitely. Last year I was new to the offense so I was still getting used to it, whereas now I pretty much feel like I know everything. And we have a bunch of senior leaders on the line, so we all make calls up front and we're all ready to get the job done.
Week 1 matchup
Who: Downers Grove South at Benet
When: 7:30 p.m. Friday
Where: Benedictine University, 5700 College Road, Lisle
2013 records: DGS 6-4; Benet 6-4
Outlook: Benet won the same game in last year's opener as it raced out to a 6-0 start to the season. The Redwings will be hoping for a similar result this time around as Jack Sznajder makes his varsity quarterbacking debut. After this one, Benet is on the road for two straight games.