This year, things have been different.
While all of the aforementioned attributes are still in place, Hereford had taken a different tack in winning all its first 10 games.
"We're a different team," said Hereford Coach Steve Turnbaugh. "Now, we normally use the pass to set up the run."
For last week's Class 2A North Region semifinal contest against visiting Edmondson, though, a soaking, steady rain dictated that the Bulls revert to pre-2004 form.
After a slow start, they found the old days weren't so bad. Hereford ran the ball early, often and effectively in pounding the Red Storm, 35-0, in the muck and the mire of Hereford stadium for its 11th consecutive victory.
The revived ground game should strike fear into the hearts of Eastern Tech, Hereford's opponent in this week's regional final (7 p.m., Nov. 19 at Hereford).
Quarterback Andrew DePaola, who boasts 18 touchdown passes this season, didn't complete a pass (in four attempts) in the Edmondson rout.
Not that he needed to, thanks to 289 rushing yards in 38 attempts by the winners � for a gaudy 7.6 yards-per-carry average � that more than compensated for the lack of a passing attack.
"We started a little slow," Hereford's 6-foot-2, 275-pound two-way tackle, Artie Willette, said. "But once we went ahead, 14-0, you could feel them start to wear down. They were hanging their heads a little."
Bulls' backs Alex Butt, Cory Smith and Ryan Asper bludgeoned the Red Storm for five touchdowns, the last of which came with 5:06 remaining in the third quarter when the "slaughter" rule (clock stops only for injuries or time-outs) was employed.
Lonnie Liggins, Anthony Phillips and Tyrell Seabron carried that ball on the three remaining series for the Bulls.
Asper scored the game's first touchdown after he was seemingly stopped at the line and instead bounced outside and completed the 13-yard jaunt into the end zone. Ryan Farrell's conversion kick made it, 7-0, with 58 seconds remaining in the opening period.
A counter criss-cross resulted in a 46-yard TD scamper by Butt on the next possession and Smith scored from the Red Storm 13 for a 21-0 lead on the next drive.
With poor footing on the field and a driving rain hampering them, the visitors mustered little in the way of an offense after falling so far behind.
Linemen Joe Akers, Willette, Matt Jones, Bill Rueter and Brian Smith were also standing in the enemy's path, as were fellow defenders Farrell, Phillips and Aaron Moore.
Handed a golden opportunity to score after a botched Hereford punt in the final period, the Red Storm lost four yards in four plays from the Bulls' 30.
"I was worried about this game," Turnbaugh. "I didn't know if we could run the ball against them."
Now he knows what the Red Storm learned: the Bulls have not forgotten how to run the football.
E-mail Nelson Coffin at firstname.lastname@example.org