State title will be for the taking in stacked Division I

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Hilliard Davidson 2006 State Champs
High school football fans were treated to a thrilling conclusion to the 2006 season when Hilliard Davidson edged Mentor 36-35 in double-overtime to capture the Division I state championship. This year, the state title is up for grabs as several teams in each Region have the pieces in place to win a state title.


High school football fans were treated to a thrilling conclusion to the 2006 season when Hilliard Davidson edged Mentor 36-35 in double-overtime to capture the Division I state championship. Not many people across the state expect the Wildcats to repeat, but very few anticipated them winning last year either. They are undersized for a Division I team (based on the size of their players and the size of their enrollment) but head coach Brian White has developed them into the best big-school program in Central Ohio. Dublin Coffman – which is stockpiled with D-I college talent – will look to take the crown from them this year. 

Region 1 is loaded with strong teams such as Mentor, Cleveland Glenville, Cleveland St. Ignatius and Lakewood St. Edward.

Region 2 could come down to a battle between rivals Canton McKinley and Massillon Washington – who are each dripping with talent this season.

And last but certainly not least, Region 4 comes fully equipped with the team that just might win it all this year – Cincinnati St. Xavier – as well as several other top programs such as Centerville, Cincinnati Colerain and Huber Heights Wayne.  

Brunswick (11-1)

     The Blue Devils cruised through the ’06 regular season undefeated and won a playoff game. This year’s team will once again be led by quarterback Sean Bedevelsky (5-11, 187, Sr.).

Canton McKinley (12-2)

     The Bulldogs were state semifinalists last year and lost a heartbreaker to Mentor, 18-13. This season, head coach Brian Cross welcomes back a talented group and McKinley could be in the hunt for the state title once again.

Centerville (8-2)

     The Elks were the odd team out last year in Region 4, finishing ninth and barely missing the playoffs. This year, head coach Ron Ullery returns 11 starters (6 offense, 5 defense).

Cincinnati Colerain (13-1)

     The Cardinals are replacing longtime head coach Kerry Coombs as well as a talented senior class led by incoming OSU freshman Eugene Clifford. However, led by senior QB Doug Reynolds, they will likely be in the playoffs once again. Colerain is ranked No. 20 in the country by PrepNation.com in the preseason poll.

Cincinnati St. Xavier (10-2)

     The Bombers came up short of their second straight D-I state crown last year, falling to Cincinnati Colerain in the regional finals. This season, led by RB Darius Ashley, St. X appears loaded and could make another run at a state title. The Bombers are ranked No. 1 in the country by PrepNation.com in the preseason poll.

Cleveland Glenville (10-2)

     Talent is never a problem at Glenville under head coach Ted Ginn Sr. This year, the Tarblooders will be led by WR/LB Cordale Scott (6-3, 197, Sr.), OL/DT Shawntel Rowell (6-4, 330, Sr.) and DT Dawawn Whitner (6-2, 245, Sr.).

Cleveland St. Ignatius (6-4)

     The former state powerhouse returned to the playoffs last season under head coach Chuck Kyle and this year the Wildcats will look to take the next step. St. Ignatius has two competent quarterbacks in Patrick Ryan (6-2, 180, Sr.) and Andrew Holland (6-1, 190, Jr.).

Dublin Coffman (9-4)

     With some of the best collection of talent in the state, expectations are very high for the Shamrocks this season. Offensive tackle Mike Adams (6-8, 305, Sr.) is ranked as the No. 1 overall prospect in the state by Ohio High and is one of the best OL in the nation.

Gahanna Lincoln (7-4)

     The Lions have made the playoffs four out of the last six years, including last year when they upset top-seeded Lancaster in the first round. Running back Darius Reeves rushed for 1,622 yards last year and is ranked as the No. 30 senior prospect in the state by Ohio High.

Hilliard Davidson (15-0)

     The Wildcats won the state championship last year with a thrilling 36-35 win over Mentor in double-overtime. They must replace RB Bo Delande and several other standouts, but do return quarterback Connor Dietz (6-0, 180, Sr.).

Huber Heights Wayne (7-3)

     The Warriors were the No. 6 seed in the playoffs last year, but fell in the first round. This season, head coach Jay Minton welcomes back 12 starters, six on each side of the ball.

Lakewood St. Edward (9-2)

     St. Edward was one of the favorites to win it all last year, but was upset by Warren Harding in the second round of the playoffs. They have the talent to go all the way this year led by one of the best linebacker duos in the state (Justin Staples, Mike Spooner).

Massillon Washington (7-5)

     The Tigers reached the second-round of the playoffs last year (a year after reaching the state title game) and head coach Tom Stacy could take them all the way in this his third year in the program. Massillon welcomes Canton South transfer RB DeVoe Torrence (6-2, 215, Sr.) who joins an already-loaded backfield.

Mentor (13-2)

     The Cardinals came within an eyelash of winning the state championship last season, but fell to Hilliard Davidson in double-overtime. Bart Tanski (6-2, 200) was one of the best quarterbacks in the state last year and the pinpoint passer is back for his senior campaign.

Solon (7-4)

     The Comets have qualified for the playoffs eight straight years and this season is expected to be no different. Solon is joining a new conference this year (Northeast Ohio) following the collapse of the Western Reserve Conference.

Toledo St. John's (8-3)

     The Titans qualified for the playoffs last year, but must replace a talented senior class. They do return nine starters (3 offense, 6 defense) led by FS Rick Rattay (5-11, 183, Sr.) who was a first-team All-Ohio selection last year.

* Each of these teams will be featured in-depth with detailed information about returning players, the coach's thoughts on the season and schedule information.

Brecksville Broadview-Heights (9-2)

    The Bees won a conference championship and were the No. 2 seed in the playoffs last year, but were bounced in the first round.

Cincinnati Elder (6-4)

     Elder finished 11th in Region 4 last year, but the Panthers are capable of putting together a big year. Tight end Kyle Rudolph (6-7, 220, Sr.) is one of the top players in the state.

Cincinnati Glen Este (9-3)

     The Trojans were the fifth seed in Region 4 last year and advanced to the second round.

Cincinnati LaSalle (5-5)

     The Lancers are led by OSU recruit DeVier Posey, the top wide receiver in the state according to Ohio High.

Cincinnati Sycamore (10-2)

     Sycamore had a strong 2006 campaign, finishing third in Region 4 and advancing to the second round of the playoffs.

Clayton Northmont (8-3)

     The Thunderbolts must replace graduated quarterback Clay Belton who signed with Miami University. However, Northmont returns five of the top players in the 2008 class – including OL Zebrie Sanders (6-6, 265).

Lancaster (10-1)

     The Golden Gales rolled through the 2006 regular season undefeated and earned the No. 1 seed in the Region 3 playoffs. This year’s team will be led by DT Chad Maynard (6-3, 290, Sr.).

Massillon Perry (9-2)

     The Panthers were the No. 4 seed in the playoffs last year and fell to cross-town rival Washington in the first round.

Painesville Riverside (8-3)

     The Beavers broke through and made the playoffs last year, but fell to Lakewood St. Edward in the first round.

Toledo Whitmer (9-4)

     The Panthers snuck in the playoffs as the No. 8 seed last year and proceeded to upset previously undefeated and No. 1-seeded Fremont Ross. This year Whitmer returns one of the state’s best players in TE/DE Kevin Koger (6-4, 235, Sr.).

Upper Arlington (10-2)

     The Golden Bears made it to the second round of the playoffs last year, but they must replace several key graduates such as QB Rob Anderson and DE Joey D’Andrea.

Warren G. Harding (7-4)

     The Raiders made it to the second round of the playoffs last year, but must replace OSU recruit Boom Herron at running back. They will be led by WR/DB Antoine Rucker (6-0, 170, Sr.).

* Several of these teams will be featured in-depth, detailed information about returning players, the coach's thoughts on the season and schedule information.

Name Position School
Mike Adams OT Dublin Coffman
Darius Ashley RB Cincinnati St. Xavier
Sean Bedevelsky QB Brunswick
Connor Dietz QB Hilliard Davidson
Kevin Koger TE/DE Toledo Whitmer
Chad Maynard DT Lancaster
DeVier Posey WR Cincinnati LaSalle
Rick Rattay FS Toledo St. John's Jesuit
Darius Reeves RB Gahanna Lincoln
Doug Reynolds QB Cincinnati Colerain
Antoine Rucker WR Warren G. Harding
Kyle Rudolph TE Cincinnati Elder
Zebrie Sanders OL Clayton Northmont
Cordale Scott WR/LB Cleveland Glenville
Mike Spooner LB Lakewood St. Edward
Justin Staples LB Lakewood S. Edward
Jake Stoneburner TE Dublin Coffman
Bart Tanski QB Mentor
DeVoe Torrence RB/LB Massillon Washington
D.J. Woods WR/DB Strongsville
Jerel Worthy DT Huber Heights Wayne

Week 1
  Cleveland Glenville @ Warren (Ind.) Central
  Lakewood St. Edward @ Strongsville
  Mentor @ Youngstown Cardinal Mooney
  Detroit (Mich.) Pershing @ Canton McKinley
  Middletown @ Massillon Washington
  Hilliard Davidson @ Hilliard Darby
  Clayton Northmont vs. Dayton Chaminade-Julienne
  Elder vs. Lakota West
  Huber Heights Wayne @ Cincinnati Colerain
Week 2
  Cleveland Glenville vs. Long Beach (Calif.) Poly Tech
Strongsville @ Mentor
Upper Arlington @ Gahanna Lincoln
Solon @ Massillon Washington
Hilliard Davidson @ Columbus Brookhaven
Tulsa (Okla.) Union @ Canton McKinley

Cincinnati Elder vs. Charlotte (N.C.) Independence

Cincinnati St. Xavier vs. Hyattsville (Md.) DeMatha Catholic

Clayton Northmont vs. Pittsburgh Central Catholic

Indianapolis Cathedral @ Cincinnati LaSalle
Mission Viejo (Calif.) vs. Cincinnati Moeller
Hoover (Ala.) vs. Colerain
Buford (Ga.) vs. Grove City
Week 3
Cleveland Glenville @ Cincinnati St. Xavier
Mentor @ Solon
Brecksville-Broadview Heights @ Brunswick
  Beavercreek @ Huber Heights Wayne
  Centerville @ Clayton Northmont
  Gahanna Lincoln @ Powell Olentangy Liberty
Uniontown Lake @ Canton McKinley
Week 4
  Cleveland St. Ignatius @ Mentor
Mayfield @ Solon
Brunswick @ Macedonia Nordonia
Youngstown Ursuline @ Massillon Washington
Centerville vs. Duncan (S.C.) Byrnes
Huber Heights Wayne @ Xenia
Week 5
  Cincinnati Elder @ Lakewood St. Edward
  Mentor @ Massillon Washington
  Canton GlenOak @ Canton McKinley
  Dublin Scioto @ Dublin Coffman
  Xenia @ Centerville
  Huber Heights Wayne @ Clayton Northmont
Week 6
  Lakewood St. Edward @ Cleveland Benedictine
Massillon Washington @ Cleveland St. Ignatius
Dublin Coffman @ Grove City
Galloway Westland @ Gahanna Lincoln
Hilliard Davidson @ Upper Arlington
Centerville @ Beavercreek
Week 7
  Brunswick @ Solon
  Canton McKinley @ Massillon Perry
  Massillon Washington @ Akron Buchtel
  Upper Arlington @ Dublin Coffman
Week 8
  Cincinnati St. Xavier @ Lakewood St. Edward
Strongsville @ Brunswick
Warren Harding @ Massillon Washington
Dublin Coffman @ Hilliard Davidson
Hilliard Darby @ Gahanna Lincoln
Centerville @ Huber Heights Wayne
Week 9
  Lakewood St. Edward @ Cincinnati Moeller
  Gahanna Lincoln @ Lancaster
  Huber Heights Wayne @ Kettering Fairmont
Week 10
  Cleveland St. Ignatius @ Lakewood St. Edward
Strongsville @ Solon
Massillon Washington @ Canton McKinley
Newark @ Gahanna Lincoln
Grove City @ Hilliard Davidson
Kettering Fairmont @ Centerville

OHIO HIGH PREDICTION

Final Four: Cleveland St. Ignatius, Massillon Washington, Dublin Coffman, Cincinnati St. Xavier

Championship Game:
Cincinnati St. Xavier over Massillon Washington

 

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