Scott Vossler was hired as Robinson Secondary’s new head football coach last Friday. The 28-year-old takes over for Dan Meier, who decided not to return after filling in as an interim coach last season following the departure of Trey Taylor.
Vossler has spent the past three years teaching social studies at Robinson Middle while serving as an assistant coach for the varsity football team. During that time he has coached the defensive line and special teams, taking over as defensive coordinator and associate head coach last season.
Vossler was a standout defensive lineman at Dayton, where he earned second-team All-America honors at the Football Championship Subdivision level in 2008. The Ohio native spent two seasons coaching the defensive line at Hamilton High outside Cincinnati before coming to Northern Virginia.
Vossler will need to address a group that will have graduated its top two rushers, all four starting defensive linemen and four out of five starting offensive linemen from the squad that finished 8-4 in 2013. Though there may be a few tweaks, he said the program’s traditional ground-and-pound style of play will likely be kept intact.
“I think our kids are naturally very physical and and we want to continue those things,” Vossler said Tuesday. “I think ultimately if you can run the ball and stop the run you’re going to have a lot of chances to win games. We are not going to rock the boat a lot. There’s a lot of good things going on at Robinson.”
Among those good things, according to Vossler, is the fact that he and some of the other coaches teach in the same building. The fact that Robinson’s middle school and high school are under the same roof is an advantage no one else in the conference can claim.
“We think over the last three years maybe we missed a kid or two athletically that’s maybe just played basketball or wrestled or done track and field,” Vossler said. “We’re hoping that with all the coaches teaching in the building now, especially down in the middle school, that those kids are no longer going to slip through the cracks.”
Brandon Alston, a 6-foot-5 wing, transferred to Herndon this week and is looking to join the school’s basketball team. Pending the completion of a physical and other paperwork, coach Gary Hall hopes Alston will be able to join his team by this Saturday.
Alston announced last Thursday that he would reclassify from the class of 2015 to the class of 2014, transfer from Life Center Academy (N.J.) to Herndon, and commit to play college basketball next year for Lehigh University. He was enticed by the opportunity to get immediate playing time at Lehigh and start improving his game at the college level. Alston reclassified when he was a freshman at Paul VI Catholic, so he would have been in high school for five years if he had stayed in the class of 2015.
Alston transferred from Paul VI to Middleburg Academy, where Hall coached for one season before rejoining Herndon. The timing meant Hall never coached Alston at Middleburg, though Alston knew Hall well enough to text him last week about the fact that he was moving back to Northern Virginia and enrolling at Herndon. He then asked Hall if he could join his basketball team.
“He was like, ‘Look, I know you have a good team, and I know you have a chance to win a state championship. I don’t want to do anything to disrupt the team chemistry, but if you think I could help and the guys would be okay with it, I would love to be a part of it,’” Hall said.
Barring any roadblocks, Alston would be able to play for Herndon because of the VHSL’s 21-game policy, which says a transfer can’t play more than 21 games during the regular season. Alston played in 10 games for Life Center this season, and Herndon only has seven games remaining on its schedule.
“Brandon is a really, really good kid,” Hall said. “And he’s already committed to school so it’s not like he’s going to come in with anything to prove; he’s not trying to impress people. He just wants to be a normal kid and do whatever he can to help the team.”
Alston, a versatile swingman who can play the 2 and the 3, would join a team currently ranked No. 1 in the state by MaxPreps.
“He can flat out shoot. He’s a really good shooter,” Hall said. “He brings a great degree of experience. You’re talking about a kid who’s played against some of the best teams in the country, so he’s not going to be in awe of any situation.”