WELLSBURG - When Sean Blumette talked about becoming a head coach, this is what he thought about.
He wanted to go to a program filled with tradition, with a community that supports its team, and a quarterback that was already a proven leader.
Coach Blumette, welcome to Brooke.
Blumette, who takes over for Tom Bruney, begins his first head coaching job at one of the most storied schools in the Ohio Valley, coming over from coaching at Waynesburg. This is his first coaching job in West Virginia.
''If you would have asked me two or three years ago to write a script of what kind of program I'd like to come into, I don't know if could have gotten any better than the situation here,'' Blumette said.
Blumette will be relying heavily on quarterback Alec Buchmelter, a senior starting for the third straight season. Buchmelter threw for 1,132 yards and 14 touchdowns in his junior season.
Aug. 24: Parkersburg7 p.m.
Aug. 31: St. Clairsville7 p.m.
Sept. 7: at University7:30 p.m.
Sept. 14: at Steubenville7 p.m.
Sept. 21: Wheeling Park7 p.m.
Sept. 28: at Pt. Pleasant7:30 p.m.
Oct. 12: at Pkbg. South7:30 p.m.
Oct. 19: Weir7 p.m.
Oct. 26: John Marshall7 p.m.
Nov. 2: at Morgantown7:30 p.m.
Win 5, Lose 5
''Guys like him and Raleigh Mason, they can assume leadership roles and right off the bat, I connected with them,'' Blumette said. ''I got to know the seniors and got them on board. Without that internal team leadership, building a program is almost impossible.
''To have someone like Alec, it has been tremendous. But what we have to get our guys to understand is that Alec is not a one-man team. We all have to do our part and support him and trust him with the leadership of the team and trust that he will steer us in the right direction. Based on the conversations we have, watching some film, he is getting more comfortable with what we want to do, and I am getting more comfortable with what he is capable of doing.''
Buchmelter will have a lot of flexibility in running the offense, a pistol spread featuring a zone run game with a lot of one-back, two-back and a big tight end. Buchmelter's mobility will allow him to be heavily involved in the running game.
''This is definitely not going to be a one- or two-man show,'' Blumette said. ''We are going to spread the ball around a little bit and get a lot of guys involved.''
Joining Buchmelter, also the returning leading rusher, in the backfield will be Mason at tailback, replacing Timmy Faulkner.
Justin Laughrie, Matt Hartman and Bud Smith will also get some carries. Zac Morris and Ryan Parrish will see time at fullback.
Joey Staffileno (6-foot-4, 220 pounds) is a big target at tight end, backed up by Tony Martin.
The Bruins have a multitude of receivers they plan to use in Hunter Wallace, freshman Thomas Cole, Heath Hildreth, Nick DeStefano, Ricky Molnar, Alex Tate, and Buzzy Koscevic.
Blumette is very fond of his offensive line of Justin Riggs (left tackle), Ben Rodgers (left guard), J.J. Bennett (center), Preston Wise (right guard), and Justin Elliott (right guard). Others in the mix are Cody Rine, Logan Green, and Ryan Browning.
Mason will be the leader of the defense. The senior linebacker paced the Bruins last season with 99 tackles (63 assists), 3.5 sacks, and 38 yards lost.
''Great competitor, great intensity, fiery leader,'' Blumette said of Mason.
Ashbrook will be the Will linebacker, with Martin and Staffileno battling for the strong side spot.
Backups are Zack Zietak, and Keith Donley.
Browning and Rine will man the defensive ends, with Bennett and Morris at nose tackle and Riggs and Wise at defensive tackle.
Molnar will be the strong safety and is getting pushed heavily by Parrish.
''They both bring a little bit different skill set to the table,'' Blumette said. ''Ricky is probably a little bit better cover guy and Parrish is a little better against the run.''
Walker and Wallace will rotate at free safety. Laughrie, Roger Winters, Nick Caldwell, Hartman, and Jake Ohler will see some playing time at cornerback.
The kicking game is an open competition with soccer player Jake Schwertfeger getting some looks.
''We want to make the playoffs and then it's one game at a time after that,'' Blumette said. ''We are going to start the season giving each opponent their due respect. We prepare for one game at a time, we play a game at a time. The end result, anything less than a playoff berth, we aren't going to be satisfied with.
''One thing we have to get out of the habit of is that you always worry about some teams more than others, hear about some teams more than others. The way this staff is approaching it is one game at a time and Parkersburg is up first. The first four games out of the gate for us are pretty tough and that is really going to set the tone for us. There aren't going to be any easy weeks.''
J.J. Bennett, Ryan Browning, Jake Bryan, Alec Buchmelter, Nick Caldwell, Brandon Daughtry, Keith Donley, Tony Martin, Raliegh Mason, Ricky Molnar, Zac Morris, Justin Riggs, Ben Rodgers, Jake Schwertfeger, Zach Slonecker, Jake Smith, Hunter Wallace, Broderick Winters, Zach Zietak
Shawn Ashbrook, Brandon Clevenger, Aquil Dameron, Nick Destefano, Logan Green, Heath Hildreth, Joe Hood, Kristian Koscevic, Joe Lancaster, Joe Montgomery, Shawn Shorts, Ethan Sole, Joe Staffileno, Alex Tate, Preston Wise
Kyle Bowman, Colin Burns, Justin Elliott, Matt Hartman, Michael Kurcina, Jake Ohler, Ryan Parrish, Cody Rine, Bud Smith, Wayland Smith, Aaron Smith
Thomas Cole, Matt Lazear, Justin Loughrie