"They got a lot of production in the offseason,'' Harmon said. "Their kids worked hard, and generally the harder you work, the harder it is to surrender. From a coaching standpoint, they're going to be as good as anybody around. They're going to be prepared.
"When you get that kind of energy going, it's an exciting time. You're going to have a few setbacks that take place - they had one last week [a 27-18 loss to Scott]. But he's been there long enough and the kids have enough time invested that they'll come out and play people pretty well.''
Smolder said his team was disappointed with last week's setback to top-ranked Scott, a game the Indians led on two different occasions, but thinks his players still got something out of it.
"We're never satisfied after a loss,'' he said, "but we learned some important things from it. Our kids played hard, and we got after it. A bunch of our kids worked on individual drills on their own the following Sunday, then we watched film Monday, got some mistakes corrected, and have moved forward. We had one of our best practices of the year [Tuesday] and another great one [Wednesday]. They're more mature than they have been, and they're not letting anything take our vision away from what we want to accomplish.
"The biggest thing for us this week is to just play smart - protect the football on offense and tackle well on defense. If we do that, we'll be in the game. Our kids believe now that it's a matter of executing and being fundamentally sound.''
Trent Stowers leads the Indians in rushing (365 yards, four TDs) and is also the team's No. 2 receiver behind Nathan Miller.
No one expects another 80-point explosion tonight by Wayne, not even its coach.
"I think for the most part, last week was an anomaly,'' Harmon said. "I think circumstances dictated the way the score turned out early, and it just got rolling really fast and didn't ease up until a lot of points were on the board. You can't sit back and expect that to happen every week.''
Reach Rick Ryan at 304-348-5175 or rickr...@wvgazette.com.