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Du-Pec Rivermen

Entering the 2023 season, the Du-Pec Rivermen have caught the attention of the conference and the state for the 3rd consecutive year. It is not often when you see a young co-op (began in 2017) such as the Rivermen jump onto the scene so quickly. Coming out of the COVID spring season in 2021, the Rivermen won a conference title for the 1st time, and have found themselves in the 3A playoffs every year since 2019. Add to that the recognition they have received from pollsters across the state as the Rivermen have found themselves ranked in Class 3A consistently since that spring season.

Leading the team is Coach Tyler Hoffman, who has guided the Rivermen since the inception of 2017. He has accumulated a record of 32-25, and has seen his Rivermen win 8 games on average over the past 3 playoff seasons, where Du-Pec has made a 2nd round appearance in each of those seasons. In 2023, Hoffman will be looking to direct Du-Pec to their 4th consecutive playoff appearance. Many area coaches don't think that will be a problem for the Rivermen, as many feel Du-Pec should see themselves undefeated heading into their week 6 matchup with Lena-Winslow.

Why not Du-Pec? They return 3 linemen and 4 playmakers off last year's team, which include QB Cooper Hoffman, who has taken over the reigns of the program after his brother Hunter departed following the 2021 season. Early on it seems like a game of whatever you can do I can do better, as Cooper put up significant numbers in his sophomore year guiding the Rivermen to an 8-3 record. With a completion percentage of 69.4% and 992 yards passing with 14 TD's, he is already chasing his record setting brother. Where Cooper becomes even more dangerous is with his ability to scramble, and last season he picked up 365 yards on the ground and added 4 more TD's.

While they lost their leading rusher AJ Mulcahy to graduation, they will still have speed in the backfield as Jaylen Noud will pick up more workload this fall. Noud rushed for 439 yards and 3 TD's in a backup roll for the Rivermen. Looking to help pick up the load in the backfield will be Connor Hughes and Justin Anderson.

Returning at receiver are playmakers Jaxon Diedrich and Drew Williams. The duo combined for 426 receiving yards and 5 TD's, as both will become bigger weapons in primary rolls in 2023. Some other targets for Hoffman will include Brody Black, Jordan Gassman, and Trey Jones.

The returning lineman include Erik Kormoczy, Jayden Guffey, and Grant Johnson, who Coach Hoffman says is his strongest kid on the team. Another guy looking to lead in the trenches will be Shawn Squires.

Coach Hoffman and crew have done a phenomenal job taking over program where both schools came off winless seasons to build a program gaining statewide recognition. He has a team this year that is ready to take the Rivermen to the next step, quarterfinals or further. He contributes the quick changes to the rise of the program due to the boys buying in to the weight room and the philosophies they continue preach. With that, he expects to compete towards the top of the conference.

Last year, the Rivermen had a big mix of seniors and sophomores, and despite that they had a very successful year that he says, "they played their tails off." In 2023, with the sophomores that gained a lot of experience last season now playing as juniors, combined with the seniors they have coming back, they expect to have a nice season ahead of them.

He feels given what Le-Win has done over the past few seasons they are the favorite. However, the athleticism and speed Du-Pec will bring to the field has many coaches feeling that the Rivermen are in the conference title talk once again.

You can expect to see Du-Pec find themselves in the top 10 of the Class 3A state rankings when they drop next week.

Playoff History 3-3

2019 1-1

2021 1-1

2022 1-1


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