Storied Massillon in the hunt for first OHSAA state title

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Massillon Washington Tigers
Massillon Washington finished with a 7-5 record and reached the second round of the playoffs last season – a year after reaching the Division I state championship game – and head coach Tom Stacy could take the Tigers all the way in this his third year leading the program, especially with the addition of RB/LB DeVoe Torrence.


Massillon Washington finished with a 7-5 record and reached the second round of the playoffs last season – a year after reaching the Division I state championship game – and head coach Tom Stacy could take the Tigers all the way in this his third year leading the program.

An already talented backfield was bolstered by the transfer of RB/LB DeVoe Torrence (6-2, 215, Sr.). Torrence is an Ohio State recruit and he’s ranked as the No. 2 overall prospect in the state by Ohio High magazine. Last season for Canton South, Torrence rushed for 950 yards despite splitting time at running back, wide receiver and quarterback.

Ohio High’s Duane Long says there is “no question” that Torrence is the “best running back and the best linebacker” in the state. Torrence racked up 130 tackles and six sacks as a junior and his best 40 time is a 4.52. If it sounds like he can do it all, you don’t need to get your hearing checked.

And while he enjoyed playing with older brother Devon Torrence at Canton South (who is now a freshman wide receiver at Ohio State), DeVoe Torrence is very anxious to get going for Massillon. And early word is that Torrence has looked very good in the Tigers’ scrimmages.

“I’m excited about playing for Massillon,” Torrence said. “The people there are more involved with the football situation. We’re going to face a tough schedule and I think it’s going to make me a better football player. And I like Coach Stacy. He makes sure I work hard. We have a lot of good players and I’m hoping for a big year.”

Torrence joins a crowded backfield at Massillon that includes D-I recruits Keith Herring (5-11, 200, Sr.) and Justin Turner (6-3, 190, Jr.).

“At tailback, Coach Stacy has said it’s going to be an open competition,” Torrence said. “We are going to see who the best man for the job is. And if one is doing real well, we might stick with them.”

Defensively, Torrence will see a slight position change this year in Massillon’s 4-3 base.

“I am not going to play middle linebacker this year – I’m going to play WILL (weakside) linebacker,” Torrence said.

As for the rest of that loaded Tiger backfield, Herring rushed for 546 yards last year and is ranked as a top 100 player in the senior class by Ohio High. And the multi-faceted Turner is one of the top five juniors in the state and he will be a major factor as well. It is, without question, the best trio of running backs in the state.

Likely taking over as the starting quarterback this season is Mike Clark (6-1, 180, Jr.) who is a transfer from Akron Hoban. Clark has 4.5 speed and a strong arm, so he can do a lot more than just hand the ball off to Torrence, Herring and Turner. But he will have to beat out senior Chris Willoughby, junior Tim Adkins and sophomore Rob Partridge for the starting job.

The offensive line is led by three-year starter Reggie Comeaux (6-4, 310, Sr.). The Tigers also have one of the top kickers in the state in Steve Schott (6-1, 165, Sr.).

The schedule looks challenging but manageable with amazingly seven home games and just three road contests. The toughest games will likely be at home against defending state runner-up Mentor, as well as road trips to Cleveland St. Ignatius and rival Canton McKinley. As we said in our Division I preview in Ohio High magazine and on this site, Massillon Washington is our pick to win the Region 2 championship and advance to the D-I state finals.

Massillon Washington
2007 Schedule *

Date Opponent Division
8/24/2007 Middletown I
8/31/2007 Solon I
9/7/2007 @ Parma Normandy II
9/14/2007 Youngstown Ursuline V
9/21/2007 Mentor I
9/29/2007 @ Cleveland St. Ignatius I
10/5/2007 Akron Buchtel II
10/12/2007 Warren G. Harding I
10/20/2007 Cincinnati Western Hills I
10/27/2007 @ Canton McKinley I


* Massillon is not affiliated with a particular league or conference

 

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