The task before the Greendale football team this season is to replace numerous players from a supremely talented squad which finished 13-1 in 2013.
The Panthers lost two players who are currently at NCAA Division 1 colleges — offensive lineman Jake Maxwell (University of Wisconsin) and wide receiver/defensive back Mitchell Brees (Illinois State).
Both of those, along with six other graduates, earned all-Woodland Conference West Division honors last season.
Despite all those losses, though, the Panthers' cupboard is far from bare.
'We have 24 seniors, the same number as last year,' said head coach Rob Stoltz. 'We are skilled and experienced in the offensive backfield. The same can be said with our defensive backfield and linebacking corps.
'Since we graduated several offensive and defensive linemen, we will need to demonstrate consistent play at those positions.'
Leading the Greendale offense will be senior quarterback Josh Ringelberg, who is 6 feet 1 inch and 192 pounds and was named the Now Newspapers All-Suburban Player of the Year last season after passing for 2,935 yards and 39 touchdowns.
Ringelberg capped his year by breaking the WIAA Division 3 championship game mark with 270 yards passing, including a record 97-yard scoring pass to Nate Miller.
He will have plenty of help on offense. Senior Jack Ringelberg (5-10, 186), Josh's brother, and senior Angel Ramirez (5-11, 182) will headline the running back corps.
The receiving group will be paced by senior David Johnson (6-1, 182), senior Ty Ramirez (6-2, 212), junior Tristian Pipp (6-3, 219) and senior Brad Lachman (5-11, 174), and others will figure into the picture as the season progresses.
Sophomore Mike Witkowski (6-4, 244) is the lone returnee on the offensive line and earned honorable-mention all-division last season.
The linebacking corps is strong, paced by Pipp, who racked up 153 tackles, including 12 in the state title game; Ty Ramirez, who finished with 94 tackles, including 12 in the championship contest; and senior Matt Schutte (6-0, 196).
All were starters last season, and Pipp and Ramirez made first-team all-West Division. They are already receiving major college interest.
Jack Ringelberg (honorable mention all-division) and Angel Ramirez lead the defensive backfield, while senior Chris Phillips (6-2, 193), senior Braxton Joehnk (6-1, 197) and senior Zach Schultz (6-2, 201) key the defensive line.
Stoltz said the Woodland West looks to be wide open this season.
'We had lots of graduating players, and we lost a coaching legend in Jeff Setz (of New Berlin Eisenhower),' he said. 'There are plenty of unknowns among the teams in the West.'
He thinks the Panthers, Pewaukee and Wauwatosa West will battle it out for the top spots.
The Panthers will begin the Woodland season at Pewaukee on Friday, Sept. 5.