First-year Stanwood coach Aaron Cupp knew the cupboard wasn’t bare when he was hired after Dick Abrams resigned in January.
Three of the returnees from Stanwood’s 3-6 squad were first-team all-league selections: running back Brad Gee (also a second-team linebacker), linebacker Zach Johnson and punter Kale Schmidt. Offensive lineman Alex Hatley made the second team in 2008.
With those four seniors and eight other honorable-mention selections, Cupp figured he had ample resources to put a new stamp on Stanwood football: the spread offense. A team that was run-first during Abrams’ seven seasons immediately went to the air in Friday’s 35-18 home loss to Jackson.
Senior signal-caller Michael McCune started 3 of 4 for 33 yards and a touchdown to help give the Spartans a 10-0 lead. But McCune misfired on his next nine passes (two of which were interceptions).
“I think with our passing game, we were a little bit greedy,” said Cupp, who played one season with UW coach Steve Sarkisian at BYU.
McCune (12 of 24, 117 yards, two interceptions, two touchdowns) showed flashes of brilliance late, albeit when the game was hand, by connecting on his final six passes.
Next up for the Spartans is a matchup at 3A juggernaut Meadowdale, where Cupp was an assistant under current Mavericks coach Mark Stewart for four seasons earlier this decade.