YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – With the 2023 football season just four days away for the Ursuline football team, the Irish are back and reloaded.

“Having our quarterback back, having our leading rusher back, having our leading receiver back, you know that’s a luxury from the skill perspective,” head coach Dan Reardon said.

Coming off back to back 10 win seasons, Reardon will lean on those players, like returning quarterback Jack Ericson and plenty others, early on.

“We have a lot of new faces up front this year so those guys who are veteran at the skill spots, they need to do a good job while our young guys upfront mature and can get some experience and all those things,” Reardon said.

Between DC Ferrell‘s team-leading 779 receiving yards and Christian Lynch‘s 1,857 rushing yards, the offense is ready to take an even bigger step this year.

“It’s kind of like a safety blanket for me, knowing that I don’t have to always be the one making the huge play,” Ericson said. “I know if I get the ball in my playmakers’ hands, they’re going to make great things happen, and it’s just satisfying knowing that I have them on my team, on my offense.”

Lynch also added 21 TDs, earning him a lock to the BIG 22 list as a junior, but now he’s eyeing the 2,000-yard mark and all-time school record, to cap off his career.

“It’ll be a nice accomplishment for me, I’ve been dreaming about this since I was a little kid,” Lynch said. “Hopefully kids will look up to me like I looked up to other running backs in the past.”

“He’s excited to take that next step this year and I know he has a goal within 2,000 yards, and I think he’s a kid who’s capable of doing it,” Reardon said.

The talent is there, and now those seniors like Ericson, Lynch and Ty’Req Donlow, who registered a whopping 13 sacks as a junior, are excited to lead this team into a memorable season.

“It’s really exciting, especially because we will we will go to state this year and when we were at State this year, we’re going to win,” Donlow said. “We’re not repeating the same thing we did sophomore year, so this is going to mean a lot to be a leader on this team, a state championship team.”

The Irish open up their season on Thursday, Aug. 17, against Steubenville.