Gary O'Hair has proved to be an unflappable sort since being hired as the Andale football coach in 2003. He's calm, always composed and poised.
Interviews after winning a Class 4A championship or suffering a loss in the playoffs always go about the same — straightforward and interesting. But never too high, never too low.
That hasn't changed this season as Andale sits at 0-5.
"It's tough," O'Hair said in the same tone of voice as if he were talking about his team vying for a title. "It's not the way you want to start a season, that's for sure."
O'Hair entered the season with 95 wins, and it was easy to figure he would have hit 100 wins by Week 5. Maybe Week 6.
There's no doubt that this season has been difficult, but O'Hair isn't throwing in the towel. Even though Andale is headed for its first losing season since 1994 (2-7) and possibly ending a nine-season streak of playoff berths.
He's not placing blame on his players.
They're working hard. They're playing hard. Seniors Andrew Bergkamp, Trent Horsch, Taylor Harp, Jonah Ungles and Ethan Jones are top-notch leaders with positive attitudes and talent.
O'Hair isn't placing blame on his coaching staff.
There hasn't been a rash of injuries.
It's just one of those seasons. One of those seasons where little goes right.
"The attitude of the coaches has been good, the attitude of the players has been good," O'Hair said. "They want to get it turned around, and they feel like they can. We feel we have a good team, but we have played tough oponents and haven't really jelled yet."
That schedule has been tough.
Andale opened with Wellington (2-3), which has matched its win total from 2010. Then played Mulvane (4-1), Rose Hill (4-1, its only loss to No. 2-ranked Buhler) and Collegiate (3-2).
"Wellington was a battle," O'Hair said. "I thought we matched up well with them. Mulvane, Rose Hill and Collegiate, they are very athletic teams, and their athletic quarterbacks hurt us, running and throwing the football."
On Friday, Andale lost 36-31 to unbeaten Clearwater.
"Some years, (this team) would have cruised" through Andale's first half of the season because other teams weren't as good, O'Hair said. "We had teams that couldn't even come close to competing with us, who were going through turmoil."
And if there's a positive at Andale, it's that there hasn't been turmoil.
The number of players hovers around 100, just like usual.
"There's been no discipline problems, everyone is showing up on time, they're listening to us," O'Hair said. "Coaches are working hard. I feel we're doing all the right things. I think we'll keep getting better."
And O'Hair has no plans of scrapping everything his program to right the ship.
"When you start getting beat, you start questioning, 'should we do something?' People say, 'hey, they know what you'll do, they have your defense figured out and offense figured out.' Then you change and you don't execute that very well," O'Hair said.
"You know that's not the answer. We have to do what we do and get better at it. We are getting better. Maybe the score hasn't showed, but we are getting better. Our execution is better. I don't want them to lose confidence, because then they start thinking they aren't as good and they quit playing as fast."
Andale plays at winless Circle on Friday and then starts Class 4A-District 12 play at Cheney (2-3), against Trinity (4-1) and home against Maize South (3-2).
"We've got teams down the schedule that we will match up with, as long as we continue to improve," O'Hair said. "It's not fun getting beat. But we will continue to improve."