DANVILLE- The Danville Indians have a new head basketball coach. Jason Brigham, the former JV coach for the Indians has taken on the position. The team is coming off of a championship win against Twin Valley last year and Brigham hopes for a similar result this year, but he knows he has to be realistic.
After the basketball season ended last year, Danville graduated seven of the boys that made up the championship team, those seven boys played about 95% of the minutes, leaving Brigham with little varsity experience this season. There were supposed to be five boys returning to the team, but one, unfortunately tore his ACL playing soccer for the Indians, which brings the number down to four players, who barley had any court time last season.
Brigham says, essentially the team is starting from scratch. The players on the team in the last three seasons, have been critical players since their sophomore years. Although, the experience is not there this year, the team is working hard to get in shape, they are learning how to work with one another, and Brigham knows there are other ways to win than just having experience.
"Our style of play is going to have to be different, we have no size, we have some guys with tremendous speed and quickness and we have to utilize it."
Danville has a tough road ahead of them, as they are the only division IV team in their conference, taking on 12 teams out of 20 that are either division II or III.
"As long as we work hard, we'll reap the benefits." says Brigham.
The Indians first game this season is against Blue Mountain Union, who is coached by former Indians varsity basketball coach, Jim Nelson.
This will be Nelson's first game as head coach of Blue Mountain, and is his first game back coaching for three years. Scott Rainville was the JV coach and assistant head coach with Nelson, and moved up to varsity head coach once Nelson left. Rainville brought in Brigham to be the JV and Assistant head coach last year, and now that Rainville is out, Brigham is in as head coach, and the new JV and assistant head coach? Patrick Rainville, Scott's son.
With head coaches aside, Brigham is ready for the upcoming season, he knows the team is going be a work in progress but he loves the energy that they bring to the court. All in all, Brigham says, "I'm very happy where we are currently and I'm really excited to think about where we could be at the end of the year."