Region 18 Teams To Watch: West Jeff, North Union, Madison, CJ, Mariemont present hurdles

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Region 18

A look at those teams we think will challenge for the top spot in the region.


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2013 Ohio HS Football Preview

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Region 18 Preview

Teams To Watch

*Dayton Chaminade Julienne (6-4): The Eagles had lofty expectations entering last year, but an injury-plagued season resulted in no playoffs. This year, if CJ is to make the postseason for the third time in five years, sophomore QB Jacob Harrison will play a key role. Harrison, who transferred from Centerville last year, returns after earning second team All-GCL honors (832 yards passing, 409 yards rushing, 10 TDs combined). Senior All-GCL performers Juleon Elmore (37 tackles) and Will Peterson (five INTs) return at LB and DB, respectively. HC Marcus Colvin – a program alum – is 15-8 in two years. Early non-conference games with Thurgood Marshall and Troy are stiff tests.

*Mariemont (5-5): The Warriors have some key pieces to replace, but the talent coming back is notable. Senior TE/DE Jon Bezney (6-5, 275) is a JJHuddle Top 100 prospect that owns over 10 offers. Last year five of his eight recptions went for TDs. He also made 76 tackles.  Senior David Quiambo (5-10, 220) helps anchor the OL, while senior K Hans Hinebaugh (5-6, 140) adds a dimension. Senior RB Ryden Lewis (5-11, 155) will get a share of the carries after rushing for 363 yards and five TDs last year. Mariemont returns its leading receiver as well in junior David Cowart (6-2, 180) who caught 30 passes for 484 yards and three TDs. On defense, the Warriors will lean on a pair of senior DBs in Sam Long (5-10, 170/83 tackles) and Danny Renner (5-10, 155/70 tackles).

*Middletown Madison (4-6): The Mohawks could make some noise with the return of two 1,000-yard rushers in senior Tre Owens (6-0, 180) and junior Caleb Hollen (5-11, 180). Hollan ran for 1,059 yards and 10 TDs a year ago, while Owens ran for 1,009 yards and 15 TDs. Owens (threw for 249 yards and three TDs) and returning junior Randy Davis (6-1, 180) both saw time at QB a year ago. Madison also returns its leading receiver in junior Jesse Jones (6-1, 180). Senior OL Chris Mills (6-1, 200) was second team all-league last year.

*Richwood North Union (11-1, Region 14 semifinalist): The Wildcats made the playoffs for the fourth straight season last year and won the program’s first playoff game. Can they extend the streak to five? Yep. Senior DL Nate Curts (6-6, 205/42 tackles, 14 TFL, eight sacks) anchors the defense, while senior RB Thane Hoffman returns after rushing for 939 yards and accounting for 23 TDs. He also had 349 yards receiving. Junior FB Jacob Blevins (6-0, 185) added 782 yards rushing and three TDs.

*West Jefferson (7-3): The Roughriders had played in five of six regional finals before missing the playoffs all together last season. They finished ninth in Region 20. West Jeff’s three losses? To D-VI state champion Marion Local, D-V state semifinalist Liberty Union and D-II playoff team Licking Heights. This season the Roughriders face a new challenge with a new league (switching divisions in the Mid-State League). Five of the 10 teams on 2012’s schedule have been replaced. New games loom with Jackson (non-league), Madison Plains, Bexley, Columbus Academy and Whitehall-Yearling. There’s also a trip to Marion Local in Week 2. “We will be a senior laden football team with big game experience,” head coach Shawn Buescher (86-40 in 12 years) said. “We feel that our out of conference schedule will prepare us for the new challenges we will face once we start league play. We are extremely excited about starting in our new conference.” West Jeff should be. It returns a ton of talent. Senior RB/LB Jake Hatfield (5-10, 195) is back after rushing for a team-high 678 yards and 11 TDs last year. He also ranked second on the team in tackles (60). Look for senior Logan Stepp (6-0, 170), the team’s second leading receiver last year (36 catches, 600 yards, five TDs), to step in at QB for the departed Seth Castro. Other key contributors will be senior OL/DL DJ McAninch (6’2″, 215/49 tackles/eight sacks), senior WR/LB Nick Mendenhall (6’5″, 185/45 tackles, three INTs), Senior OL/DL Brandon Doran (6’3″, 300), senior WR/DB Ross Brennenman (6’0″, 160), senior RB/DB Hayden Fulton (5’9″, 155) and senior OL/DL Carter Harris (6’0″, 215/33 tackles).  

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Region 18: Team To Beat

Our favorite to win the Region is…CLICK HERE

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Region 18: Keep An Eye On

Teams, players and programs of note entering 2013…CLICK HERE

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Region 18: Also In This Region

Who rounds out the region?…CLICK HERE

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D-V Preseason All-Ohio Team

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Playoff Teams: Our Predictions

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10 Players To Watch

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Top Games

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