2021 High School Football Previews: Buckhannon-Upshur Buccaneers


TENNERTON, W.Va. – Less than four full days now separate us from the start of the high school football season.

Today, we preview one of the three Triple-A schools that is going through head coaching change.

Zach Davis has taken over as head coach of the Buckhannon-Upshur football team.

The new head coach is seeing a small boost in roster size in Year One, which he’s hoping can be a successful one.

“I always talk about being competitive. You want to compete and let the chips fall where they may after that,” said Davis. “You compete, you play hard, you play to our standard, and let the chips fall where they may as far as wins and losses.”

Teams looking to be more competitive than they have been in the past often have a rallying cry of sorts. For Buckhannon-Upshur, it’s simple.

“‘Win the day!’ That’s our program philosophy. ‘Win the day,'” said Davis. “Be better today than you were yesterday, and that’s what those guys do. They show up every day ready to work, and they get better and they earn playing time.”

Junior quarterback, Ian Donnen, is one of several players that Davis has been very pleased with throughout camp.

“He commands the offense. He’s throwing the ball a lot better than he did last year, watching him on tape. He’s a year older. You expect that to happen. We’ve built the offense around what he can do as a quarterback, and he’s doing a really good job of it,” said the Bucs new head coach.

The Buccaneers have only won one game each of the past two seasons. It’s been since 2014 that the Bucs have had a winning season, and the seniors are hoping to change that this year.

“Everybody knows we’ve had a rough two or three years. We’re trying to change that. We’ve been working hard every single day, having lifting sessions throughout the offseason. And hopefully we’re going to see some progress this year,” said senior wideout Sterlin Thropp.

It’ll take senior leadership to make it happen this year.

“Just showing that you know what you’re doing. Keeping a positive head, you know, not getting frustrated. Just teaching all the younger kids and making sure they know what they’re doing,” said Landon McLean, a BUHS senior tight end and outside linebacker.

“Like Landon said, you got to be positive. You got to be in the right spot. You have to be a role model. And you just have to be one of them guys that the younger guys want to look up to,” added Thropp.

Buckhannon-Upshur starts its season with a tough test at home against Bridgeport, followed by multiple road games in a row.

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