There is no hotter high school football program in the state of Indiana than the Bishop Luers Knights. Coach Matt Lindsay has directed his team to three consecutive IHSAA Class 2A state championships and hasn't lost a game on the field (the Knights had to forfeit a victory a year ago) since Oct. 15, 2010.
Coach Lindsay spoke recently with News-Sentinel sports editor Tom Davis.
News-Sentinel: What does this team need to do to be able to win yet another state championship?
Lindsay: Well, that will be a challenge. We've got some rebuilding to do. It's a new team and a new group of kids. I think that they understand that. We are excited about the group that we have returning in 28 seniors. We have a lot of speed, but a new year brings new challenges. We have to replace a great quarterback in (graduated) James Knapke and rebuild the offensive line. We like the starting point that we have.
News-Sentinel: You guys have a lot of talent returning, but you did lose a lot of talent.
Lindsay: We lost a core of good role players and you always have to those role players to make your team successful.
News-Sentinel: Who is the next quarterback?
Lindsay: We don't know yet. We have (a number) of kids in the running. But we really don't know for sure. That will sort itself out.
News-Sentinel: Who will be running the ball besides Jaylon Smith?
Lindsay: We have a stable of fast kids and good running backs, which will enable us to spread the ball around, and Jaylon has been great about that.
News-Sentinel: You've coached an NFL player before – how does Jaylon's attitude and work ethic compare to (Dallas Cowboy) Anthony Spencer's?
Lindsay: Anthony (played at Luers) a long time ago. We didn't really know or believe Anthony was thinking about the NFL as a high school senior. He'll tell you that it didn't really click until he was a junior at Purdue. Anthony was a beast and so is Jaylon. They are different kinds of athletes.
News-Sentinel: What makes Jaylon so special?
Lindsay: It's a combination of size, speed, strength, and instincts.
News-Sentinel: Who will form your front seven defensively?
Lindsay: A lot of people. There is a lot of competition and a lot of three-year starters. The secondary also has some three-year starters, so we're excited.
News-Sentinel: You have a lot of speed in the secondary, if not much size.
Lindsay: We are blessed with as much speed as anybody around here.
News-Sentinel: What do you think of the new IHSAA “success rule”?
Lindsay: We'll go wherever they tell us to go and play whoever they tell us to play. We play 4A and 5A schools all year long anyway. If you have the horses, then you are going to compete.