ARDMORE, OK - "We definitely keep it in the back of our mind as motivation to push us which I like to think, it's a new year, new opportunities we just have to keep pushing to hopefully get back to that game and change the outcome of it" said Creed Cox, the senior quarterback for Ardmore.
That game he's talking about? The 5-A state championships this past year. Ardmore got all the way there, but wasn't able to seal the deal.
"Going to the state game was a great experience, but the outcome of the game, it just didn't go our way" said Marcus Walker, a senior outside linebacker.
"What we learned is that you have to earn everything. If you want to win it all, you have to earn them, 14 in a row" said Head Coach Josh Newby.
One of the biggest reasons that the Tigers made it all the way to the state finals were because of their seniors. Ardmore graduated 19 players and they're now trying to fill those spots in hopes of going to state again.
"Everyone out here today knows that we lost a lot of seniors but we came together this spring and summer and had tremendous workouts. What I've seen is that kids are hungry. They're hungry to prove themselves and hungry to play" said Coach Newby.
"They know they have big shoes to fill because that senior class, they were a good team. And we know that we just have to do whatever it takes to get back to that game" said Senior quarterback, Creed Cox.
And that guy, Creed Cox will be a huge component for them. The senior is stepping into the quarterback role with the team ready to go behind him.
"Creed brings a special presence to the locker room and people rally around him. He's funny, he's humorous but when it's time to compete, it's time to compete and the kids know that. And when Creed's ready, they'll be ready" said Coach Newby.
Well they better be ready because week 1 is no walk in the park. They'll face off against Ada in one of the most historic and iconic rivalries in the state of Oklahoma.
"I love playing Ada. All the emotions that come with it, it's just a great feeling. You just get all the first game jitters out of you. Ada's a great football team but we love to compete." said Creed Cox.
"The stands are packed, the bands are playing, It's a great way to start off the year. You've got to be ready to go game one. Coach Bearus does a tremendous job and those kids are motivated so we'll have our hands full that night" Coach Newby said.