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Hancock Leads Irish

SPRINGFIELD, Mo -- Steve Hancock starts the football season with a new team this year.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo--Coach Steve Hancock has been around the Ozarks nearly three decades and for him as one public school door closed another private school door opened at Springfield Catholic.

A new high school football season is here, and for Springfield Catholic there's a new but familiar face in charge.

"Really impressed and excited about the kids we have here, the parents and the school. We are enjoying the change and it's exciting times for us," said Coach Steve Hancock.

Steve Hancock retired from the public school system last year after 28 years on the Branson sidelines, but the coach just couldn't stay away from football.

"Not ready to sit in the easy chair yet. This opportunity came open, it gave me an opportunity to still coach and teach full time. I love being around the game of football and hopefully can do that as long as  I can," said Hancock.

Senior quarterback Jack Jones is one of the 8 returning Irish starters.

"He has really taken a grasp of the team, he's a great leader. He's just the guy you'd want to play for," said quarterback Jack Jones.

Coach Hancock made 12 playoff appearances with the Pirates including some second place finishes. It's those experiences he hopes to carry over to the Fighting Irish.

"Every time you move you always miss the people you leave behind, but it's kind of fun to start from the beginning again and go from ground zero again and work your way up," said Hancock.

Hancock and the Irish hope to improve on Catholic's 5-6 season last year and it all kicks off at Strafford for week one tonight.

"We are starting off with a very tough schedule, start of with Strafford and then we play Mountain View Liberty. We got a big challenge ahead of us," said Hancock.

"We haven't played them in several years. I have never played there. Kind of interested to get in the atmosphere. To see what it has to bring," said Jones.

Hancock is hoping it brings a lot of Friday night football victories.
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