Four Downs with Matthew Symmes
FB: Valparaiso offensive coordinator discusses Indiana Wesleyan, Appel Jr. and how the Beacons move forward after two losses
It might be a bye week for the Valparaiso football team, but that doesn’t mean the quest for improvement has been put on hold, especially in the wake of last Saturday’s turnover-filled 24-22 loss to Indiana Wesleyan.
The offensive unit started watching film of the game the moment the buses pulled away from Wildcat Stadium. With five interceptions and lost fumble, there was plenty of film to dissect.
I watched the film as well, and I came away with more questions than answers. Rather than using my extraordinary knowledge that was acquired through hours of playing NCAA Football 14 on the Playstation, I thought I’d go straight to the source. I always learn a lot through the interviews I have with Landon Fox, and while I know the buck often stops with the head coach, I wanted to dig deeper on the offensive side of the ball. That led me to asking for the chance to sit down with Valparaiso offensive coordinator Matthew Symmes.
Symmes and I first spoke during training camp last month and I came away impressed. What was supposed to be a quick five-minute conversation turned into 17 minutes of deep analysis. He ended that conversation with “if you ever need anything, never hesitate to ask.”
So, I asked.
For some context, I’ve been covering Valparaiso football in some capacity for the last 18 years and while I’ve done a handful of offseason stories that have featured conversations with coordinators, I’ve never interviewed a coordinator during the season. Then again, I’ve never covered a game where the quarterback threw five interceptions, stayed in the game, and nearly brought the team back to victory in the second half. There were questions to be asked after last week’s game and I’m glad the right guy was willing to answer them.
In the first edition of Four Downs during the 2023 season, Matthew Symmes joins The Victory Bell to talk all things Indiana Wesleyan, Mikey Appel Jr. and his first two games as an offensive coordinator.