DINWIDDIE, Va. (WWBT) - When it comes to high school football in Central Virginia, Dinwiddie has built a program like few others. Billy Mills arrived as head coach in 2005, and two years later the Generals made their first of what is now a streak of 12 consecutive playoff appearances.
“Being a program is our goal,” said Mills. “To me, that means we’re solid in every aspect and we’ve still got a lot of work to do. We probably always will, but we’re always striving to be a little bit better.”
2018 saw the Generals finish 11-2 and advance to the third round of the VHSL Class 4 playoffs. It marked the latest of six double digit win seasons that Dinwiddie has put together under Mills. Now a group of experience and young talent looks to continue the tradition of high level play, a group that the head coach hopes is looking forward.
“Just kind of putting everything behind and helping them understand that they need to develop their own identity and find out who they are, and then come together and be a good team,” the head coach said.
“We come in every year, ‘oh you lose this person, you lose that person,’ they think we’re not good, but we’re bringing in a lot of young people this year. We’re going to be good,” added junior offensive lineman Nathan Cunningham.
The Generals return five starters on both sides of the ball. K’ymon Pope has graduated, leaving a hole at starting quarterback, but Mills feels he has two capable replacements waiting in the wings. Senior Colby Slade and sophomore Brenton Hilton will compete for the QB1 spot throughout camp. Mills said he’ll evaluate components from both an on-field play and a leadership perspective.
“What kind of leader are you being? What are they seeing you do? They don’t care what you say. What do they see you do?”
Dinwiddie won a state championship in 2013 and fell one win shy of another one three years later. Mills is not yet prepared to put this team in the same class with those particular squads, but the 2019 Generals will certainly get a good feel for what they are with a challenging early schedule.
“Everybody’s good in shorts, but we’ll see. We’ve got some really tough scrimmages and a really tough first three games. That’s going to be a good test for us to see where we’re at.”
The Generals kickoff their 2019 schedule on August 30, hosting GW-Danville.
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