OL/DL Josh Short (6-1, 230, Jr.), OL/DL Zach Brenneman (6-3, 200, Sr.), OL/DL Kameron Barnes (6-4, 300, Jr.), OL/DL Draye Williams (6-0, 215, Sr.), OL/DL Andrew Loera (6-0, 220, Sr.), OL/DL Aaron Lewis (6-2, 280, Jr.), OL/DL Jordan Simon (6-1, 200, Jr.), TB/LB Dee Miller (6-1, 200, Jr.), WR/DB Michael Craig (15-10, 140, Jr.), TB/DB Adam Bowers (5-10, 160, Sr.), HB/DB Josh Graber (5-10, 160, Jr.), TB/DB Mike McMorrow (5-9, 140, Sr.), HB/LB Cortes McCrary (6-3, 220, Sr.)
2006 Record: 10-3
The most noticeable difference between last year’s Orville squad and this year’s will be under center.
Gone is first team All-Ohio QB Kyle Simmons, who passed for over 3,200 yards and rushed for over 1,000 in his senior campaign. Also gone is leading receiver and 1st team All-Ohio selection Brad Thomas.
“We are losing all our skill and that is hard to replace. You can’t replace the offense that we lost. The amount of skill we lost on the offensive side of the ball is just incredible so we have to try replace all that,” said head coach Doug Davault.
The QB spot will most likely be filled by senior Brynt Wertz. But with the entire offensive line returning, protection will be good for the new QB as he adjusts to the starting role early on.
“We should be pretty good up front. All of our starting offensive line is back plus we have some promising young kids that will be on the team this year. We’ve got quite a few guys where I think we are going to be pretty decent upfront,” said Davault.
McMorrow started in the backfield last year and is slated to tote the ball again for the Red Riders. McCrary, primarily a defender, will see some time in the Orrville backfield as well.
“We’ve got about eight kids in the backfield that can carry the ball but we’re still going to throw the ball – its who we are, its what we do – we’ll just run it a little bit better than we have in the past,” Davault said.
After running a 3-4 defense last year for the first time, Davault is pleased with how his players are learning the new scheme and like how his players fit into their roles.
“What I am most excited about is our defense,” he said. “I think we can be real good defensively. We’ve continued to revamp the 3-4 and we’re continuing to fool around with how we want to do things. I like some of the things we’ve got going in.
“And I like our personnel. Cortez is going to be one of the best linebackers around and up front we’ve got a good nose guard and two good tackles (Steven Carozza, Loera, J.T. Mosely). I feel real good about the front guys and at the linebacker spots. We’ve got about four kids that can play with Cortes.”
The offensive skill positions will be the wild card for Orrville this season, and should the players stepping in those positions perform at a high level, the Red Riders will will be contenders in the region once again.
“All the guys are going to have to contribute from the skill positions from quarterback to wide receiver to running back. They’re going to be young and it will be their first time playing on Friday nights and that is an iffy thing because you never know how they’re going to respond. We could go through some growing pains early on. We’ve just got to be able to maintain and hang on in the first part of this so by midseason these guys start to get what it is about and it goes well for them.”
Davault also offered his thoughts on the schedule, the Ohio Cardinal Conference and the new-look Region 13.
“Our schedule is always good,” he said. “Ashland will be the favorite in the conference. Our non-league schedule is formidable. In the conference, it is going to be real balanced. We’ve got a lot of good teams and a lot of teams that are going to compete this year. We’re going to try everything we can to be up there and compete with the rest of them.
“You just never know in our conference. We are a Division IV team in a Division II conference. That is going to takes its toll on you but we’ll run our kids out there and do the best we can. But if all our kids grow up quickly like they need to we feel we can be right there and compete for the league like everyone else does.
“Our region may be the toughest region in the state. We picked up Steubenville and, of course, we’ve got Mooney back. With our region, if you’re able to escape you’ve got to be feeling pretty good about a shot at a state title. But what we’re hoping is that we just get an opportunity to be part of that mix come playoff time. That’s what we try to do each year. But it takes a little luck and it takes a little skill and we have a little bit of both this year.”
|8/24/2007||Canal Fulton Northwest||3|
|8/31/2007||@ Wooster Triway||4|
|9/14/2007||@ Bellville Clear Fork||4|
|9/28/2007||@ Mansfield Senior||1|
|10/12/2007||@ Millersburg West Holmes||3|
|10/19/2007||@ Mansfield Madison||2|