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First-year Anamosa football head coach Caleb Huss smiles as he carries footballs during the first week of practice Thursday, Aug. 13. The Raiders open the 2020 campaign with a week zero contest hosting West Delaware Friday, Aug. 21, with kick-off set for 7 p.m.

        After seeing the initial Anamosa football schedule, released by the Iowa High School Athletic Association a few weeks ago, athletic director Bret Jones said he would try and get the Raiders at least one more home game.

      Of the seven on the original 2020 schedule, five were slated to be on the road.

      Not anymore.

      Jones made some calls and was able to get Anamosa into a week zero game this Friday night (Aug. 21) against West Delaware, with kick-off set for 7 p.m.

      There’s some excitement surrounding the Raider program as we head into the 2020 campaign, as a young and talented group come together looking to improve on their 2019 run that saw them play some of their best football down the stretch.

      The good news? Anamosa returns starting quarterback Grahm Humpal, who turned in a solid campaign as a mere sophomore starter completing 111-of-187 passes for 1,261 yards with 11 touchdowns. Humpal also led the Raider ground game rushing for 421 yards and two more scores.

      Alex Casey will also play a major role in the backfield after a 2019 campaign that saw him rush for 339 yards and two touchdowns.

      The bad news? Star senior Nolan McLean is lost for the season following a knee injury he suffered before the start of baseball back in June. That will be tough for first-year head coach Caleb Huss to make-up for, but as the old saying goes, ‘next man in’, and fortunately the Raiders to have the depth to do exactly that.

      McLean was a two-way weapon on offense, able to run and catch the football, but fortunately the Raiders return Trae Klatt, Seth Schoon, Sam Wilt and Colton Borst, all of whom possess plenty of explosiveness in the receiving corps.

      Levi Ehresman is also back as the team’s top tackler (70 tackles) from 2019, and plenty of talent returns on that side of the football as well for Anamosa as West Delaware makes their way to Anamosa following a 5-4 campaign in 2019 as the Hawks were winners of their final three contests (26-20 over Decorah, 47-7 over Charles City and 36-35 over Waterloo East).

      A year ago, the Hawks were mainly a running team offensively, rushing for 1,757 yards and 24 touchdowns while throwing for 993 yards and five scores as quarterback Jared Voss returns after completing 67-of-138 passes. Voss’s main target is back as well, as receiver Kyle Kelley grabbed 30 passes for 496 yards and three touchdowns.

      After Anamosa plays their week zero contest Friday night, the Raiders are off until Friday, Sept. 4 at Beckman, before the remainder of the 2020 schedule looks like: Sept. 11 at Monticello; Sept. 18 vs. Camanche; Sept. 25 at Maquoketa; Oct. 2 vs. West Liberty and Oct. 9 at Tipton.

      Every contest following the week zero game against West Delaware will be a 7:30 varsity start.

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