SPECIAL TEAMS: No starters named as of publication time
STRENGTH: Offense, with the starting quarterback, fullback, running and wide receiver returning, the experience on the offensive side of the ball should translate to more than two touchdowns per game (the average in 2012)
QUESTION: The offensive line is inexperienced
KEY GAMES: Good showings at home against Gilmer and Union County to start the 2013 campaign will be key to gaining momentum entering a tough Region 7-AAA schedule.
TRENDING: Fannin County has the experience on offense and defense needed to ensure that last year's 1-9 showing was an anomaly
Aug, 23 at Murphy, N.C.
Aug. 30 vs. Gilmer
Sept. 6 vs. Union County
Sept. 13 at White County
Sept. 27 vs. West Hall
Oct. 11 vs. North Hall
Oct. 18 at Banks County
Oct. 25 vs. Buford
Nov. 1 at Dawson County
Nov. 8 at East Hall
BLUE RIDGE -- In Greg Chambers first full year at the helm of Fannin County football, the team suffered through its worst season in recent memory, going just 1-9.<br />
Chambers is hopeful that year No. 2 will make last season a distant memory.<br />
"We have kids back that have seen what winning is and have seen what losing is," Chambers said. "They know what it takes to win and what it takes to recover from not winning and that makes you tough."<br />
Fannin County has 12 seniors on this year's team and each of them will be asked to play key roles during the 2013 campaign.<br />
"Our senior leadership has been big this summer," Chambers said, "and I'm confident that will continue throughout the season."<br />
The Rebels feature a multiple offense behind returning senior quarterback Trevor Stone and senior running back Peyton Satterfield. They have talent at the skill positions with the return of fullback Jordan Gray and wide receiver Noah O'Neal, but will be charged with the task of replacing two seniors on what was already an inexperienced offensive line.<br />
"Offensively you can't ask for much more than returning your quarterback and running back," Chambers said. "Our offensive line has some questions, but we also still have size. We're going to be in a lot more games this season based on the experience of Trevor (Stone)."<br />
Defensively, Fannin County will once again rely on the experience of a linebacker corps featuring senior returning starts Gray and O'Neal. Senior free safety Satterfield will anchor the defensive backfield as a returning starter.<br />
The Rebels open with a trip to Murphy, N.C., before settling in for two games at home ahead of a daunting Region 7-AAA schedule that includes trips to White County, Banks County, Dawson County and East Hall. <br />
"Our region is tough, we knew that last year and we know it even more this year, but we're also aware that outside of Buford and North Hall, the race for the playoffs is up for grabs," Chambers said. "We know that with the experience we have returning and the seniors we have leading us, that when region time hits, we'll have the kinks worked out and be ready."
While title runs and the excitement of a busy spring sports season has stolen most of the headlines over the past few weeks, another group of dedicated athletes have been hard at work -- aiming for the headlines of this fall.