The ritual postgame Gatorade or water shower of the head coach after a win is a football tradition going back decades. For Royals' head coach Marc Franz, it had a deeper meaning after Rogers blanked Monticello 27-0 on Sept. 27. The win was the 100th of Franz's career.
Franz said that after two years of studying math and physics at St. Cloud State University, he decided that he wanted to coach athletics and teach high school math.
"Football is the ultimate team game," he said. "I love team athletics. You need everyone. You need big guys. You need the little guys. You need guys who can catch and you need guys who can throw. You need guys who can kick. You need guys who can run. There is a spot for everyone on the football field."
Franz is the only head coach in the history of the Rogers varsity football program. Since becoming the Royals head coach in 2003, the Royals have appeared in the State tournament three times. The Royals made the Class 4A state tournament in 2009, 2010 and 2011, losing the 2010 championship game to Totino-Grace 34-10.
Franz's math classroom is located a few steps away from the Royals' workout room. Motivational posters and some of his achievements over the previous 16 seasons adorn the walls. There is a giant photo of the 2014 MLB All-Star Game at Target Field near the front of the classroom. Yet there is one thing missing from his office: Franz and the Royals have never won a state championship. At 5-1 with two games remaining, Rogers is looking for its first postseason win since Oct. 17, 2015 when the Royals defeated Monticello 36-20.
Junior running back Ben Dahl said Franz is a man who has a caring heart.
"[That's] just how much he cares about football and how much he cares about the team," Dahl said.
Math is incorporated into the team's preparation. Geometry and statistics play heavy roles in Franz's preparation and scouting for each opponent.
"With some of the statistics we have access to [online], math is a significant part of that," he said.
Rogers lost its first game of the season to Moorhead 37-24 on Aug. 29. Since then, the Royals have won five straight games. Now Franz and Rogers have a chance to finish first in the conference as long as the Royals keep pace with Elk River. The Elks and Royals are tied for first in the North Central-Blue conference standings with five wins each, but Elk River is 6-0. Rogers will host Elk River on Wednesday at 7 p.m.
Even though making predictions is part of math, Franz said he no longer makes them.
"Our focus is on playing our best football," Franz said. "If we take care of ourselves, everything else will fall into place."