The 2009 JJHuddle Ohio High Football Preseason Power Poll is here!!
JJ's Ohio High Power Poll
After months of research, talking to coaches and players alike, we have
compiled all our information and present the highly-anticipated 2009 JJHuddle Ohio High Preseason Power Poll! With the season just
days from kickoff, check out the top teams in the state in each
Division as they prepare for their march towards the 2009 state championship trophy.
With the kickoff to the 2009 season just days away, we are proud to announce the Sixth Annual JJHuddle Ohio High Power Poll!
The Poll has been a huge success in past seasons and once again we
are excited to bring Ohio the best high school football coverage in the state
years past, this preseason poll will remain as is until the third week of the
season has been completed and then we will restructure the standings
with links are teams we previewed over the course of the last six weeks.
Week: Preseason | 1 | 2 |
3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 |
8 | 9 | Final
Cincinnati Elder (13-2, Division I State Runner-Up)
Elder moved back into the forefront in the GCL as well as
on the statewide stage with its run to the state title game. There had been some
lean times for the Panthers since winning back-to-back state titles in 2002-03. After winning the regional title, Elder downed Pickerington
Central 24-10 in a state semifinal before falling to Cleveland St. Ignatius
28-20 in the title game. Still, it was a major breakthrough for an Elder program
that had failed to win a playoff game in its two playoff appearances since
winning its last title in 2003.
“It was an exciting year,” said Elder coach Doug Ramsey,
who is starting his 13th year as the Panthers head coach. “I’m not
sure there were a ton of expectations for that team. That team was a big-time
overachiever. We won 13 games and we lost one to the eventual national champion
(Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas) and one in the state title game.”
Elder will have four returning starters on offense and
seven on defense.
“Our skill positions on offense should be pretty good,”
Ramsey said. “But we lost all five of our linemen from last year. We have a
chance to have a bigger line than we had last year. On defense, we don’t
normally have seven guys back. We expect the defense to play well.”
Mark Miller threw for 1,968 yards with 21 touchdowns
against just four interceptions.
“Mark understands the game,” Ramsey said. “He is a very
accurate quarterback and gets the ball to the open receiver.”
Alex Welch, who had four touchdowns among his 16 catches
last year, has already verbally committed to Notre Dame.
The schedule is tough as nails. Elder faces Illinois state
champion East St. Louis and Kentucky state champion Louisville Trinity. Elder
also faces Colerain, Lakewood St. Edward and Columbus DeSales in addition to the
usual GCL challenges.
Cleveland Glenville (11-1)
The Tarblooders won their first 11 games and
appeared to be a potential state championship contender. That streak including
an opening week win over rival Cleveland St. Ignatius. But St. Ignatius avenged
that early defeat with a stunning 8-7 win in a regional semifinal before going
on to the state championship itself.
As always, there are heavy graduation losses.
OL Marcus Hall and LB Jonathan Newsome signed with Ohio State. But coach Ted
Ginn Sr. has quite a bit of talent still on hand to try and make another title
S Christian Bryant has scholarship offers from
schools from coast to coast and could be the next spotlight player out of this
inner city school.
Latwaan Anderson transferred from Lakewood St.
Edward, where he was a defensive standout. Jayrone Elliott’s stock has also
risen with colleges during the spring and early summer.
Glenville is expected to win the Senate League
again. The nonconference is daunting with road games against St. Ignatius and
trips downstate to face Reynoldsburg and Huber Heights Wayne.
Cleveland St. Ignatius (14-1, State Champions)
Coach Chuck Kyle, back for his 27th year with
the Wildcats, welcomes back three players with starting experience on offense
and five on defense from his 10th state championship team. Kyle hopes to
maintain the momentum built on that title run.
“We had a couple of camps recently and the
kids were all like, ‘It feels like we just stopped (playing),’ ” Kyle said. “Now
the kids know what the reality is about winning a state championship. What you
hope is that you get to practice an extra five weeks because last year, that
really did help our young kids get more experience during our playoff run.”
LB Scott McVey issued an early commitment to
Ohio State after a dominant four-sack performance in the state title game win
over Cincinnati Elder. For the year, McVey had 94 tackles and 34-1/2
“Scott’s the type of kid, he’s a very focused
athlete,” Kyle said. “He loves playing the game. It’s almost like, ‘That’s (his
recruitment to Ohio State) done, now let’s get ready to play the season.’ He’s
glad it’s out of the way so he can play the game for his team. He had an amazing
season last year.”
Kevin Johnson, who rushed for 302 yards and
four TDs last year, was a state qualifier in the 100-meter dash and is a
Louisville recruit. Brendan Carrozoni is being heavily recruited as a tight end. Mark Myers started a few
games for departed senior Andrew Holland last year at quarterback.
The schedule has Glenville at the beginning
and rival Lakewood St. Edward at the end with a ton of challenges – including
Clayton Northmont, Mentor, Massillon Washington and Cincinnati St. Xavier -- in
Cincinnati Moeller (11-2)
John Rodenberg stepped in as the Moeller coach last year
and led the Crusaders to a playoff berth. Moeller dropped its first-round game
to Colerain 17-10. Rodenberg’s team could be poised to go deeper in 2009 with
seven starters back on offense and eight returning on defense.
“We were excited with the way we got into the playoffs,”
Rodenberg said. “We beat St. Xavier and Lakewood St. Edward. Unfortunately, we
got in there and lost to Colerain. We have a lot of guys coming back. We hope
they can play up to their potential. Our region is extremely tough, but if they
can do that we could be in the thick of it this year.
“We are excited to have that many starters back. That puts
me under a lot of pressure I guess,” Rodenberg joked.
All eyes will be on Andrew Hendrix, who issued a verbal
commitment to Notre Dame in late June. He threw for 1,609 yards with 11
touchdowns against seven interceptions last year.
“He’s got phenomenal arm strength and release,” Rodenberg
said. “He is very intelligent, he makes great decisions and he is a humble
LB Nick Galvin tallied 9-1/2 sacks as a junior. LB Marcus
Rush is a Michigan State verbal and OL Jeff Tanner is a Wake Forest verbal.
It has been a pretty good two years at the helm for Tom
Bolden, who followed the legendary Kerry Coombs as the Colerain coach in 2007.
In two seasons, the Cardinals have gone 21-3 under Bolden. Last year, Colerain
downed Cincinnati Moeller and Huber Heights Wayne in the playoffs before falling
to Cincinnati Elder 27-20 in double overtime in a heart-stopping regional final.
Middletown snapped Colerain’s string of 61 straight Greater Miami Conference
wins, but the Cardinals still won the conference title. Bolden welcomes back
seven starters on offense and six on defense.
“Without a doubt, we are still a young team,” Bolden said.
“We played six sophomores last year. They did not perform like sophomores. They
excelled. Defensively, we think we will be as athletic and as fast as we have
Greg Tabar is a caretaker in the option offense, although
he threw for 515 yards and six touchdowns last year. Tyon Williams and Trayion
Durham each eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark last year. Williams finished with 1,269
yards and 16 TDs rushing, while Durham had 1,032 yards and nine scores.
Colerain meets St. Xavier in the Crosstown Showdown and
visits Cincinnati Elder as well. Another Greater Miami Conference title will be
the goal when the conference season arrives.
Dublin Coffman (7-3)
After reaching the state semifinals with a 13-1 season in
2007, Coffman went 7-3 and finished 10th n the region to miss the playoffs. Mark
Crabtree, back for his ninth year at Coffman and 15th season as a varsity head
coach, has six starters back on offense and five on defense.
“I think our players were definitely disappointed about
missing the playoffs last year, but we had nobody to blame but ourselves,”
Crabtree said. “We started out 7-0, but we lost our last three games by a total
of 15 points. We weren’t probably athletic enough to make enough of the plays we
needed to defeat the teams we played at the end of the year. We lost to three
playoff teams there at the end.”
Cole Stoudt, whose brother Zack was the previous starter
and a Louisville signee last year, stepped in as the starter last year as a
sophomore. Stoudt, son of former NFL quarterback Cliff Stoudt, is now regarded
as one of the state’s top 20 prospects in the 2011 class and has an offer to
“The first thing we saw with Cole was he does have the
ability to play at this level,” Crabtree said. “As a sophomore in high school,
you never know. He came in and competed against kids two years older than him.
He did a good job being a leader and taking charge. He was not intimidated by
“It’s nice to know we have him for two more seasons. He is
mechanically sound and has the ability to make good decisions. His future is
Coffman opens with Powell Olentangy Liberty with a game at
Ohio Stadium as part of the Kirk Herbstreit Varsity Series. As always, the Ohio
Capital Conference Central Division – with the likes of Upper Arlington,
Hilliard Davidson and Worthington Kilbourne – looms large.
Huber Heights Wayne (8-4)
Wayne was off to a 5-0 start before Braxton Miller, its
standout quarterback, suffered a broken leg in a Week 6 game against Clayton
Northmont. Wayne still made the playoff field and swamped unbeaten Cincinnati
Woodward 52-0 in its opener before falling to Cincinnati Colerain 23-0 in the
second round. Miller has recovered from the injury and is considered
Ohio’s top prospect in the 2011 class. After throwing for 1,000 yards and
rushing for 500 as a freshman, he threw for 642 yards and five touchdowns in six
games before the injury.
“When you have a player like Braxton, you have to feel good
about that,” said Wayne coach Jay Minton, who returns for his 11th
year as the Wayne coach and 19th as a varsity head coach. “His
competitiveness and athletic ability, that is a combination that you don’t see
very often. He’s a special player who, when he steps on the field, he makes
everyone else around him better.”
Minton has five starters back on offense and six on
“We feel we are pretty solid up front,” Minton said. “At
receiver, we don’t have that one marquee guy. With Braxton being there, you want
to make sure you have some guys who can run great routes and catch the ball.”
Brothers Terrence and Terry Talbott are Michigan recruits.
The schedule will be a challenge. Wayne opens against
Cincinnati Princeton in the Crosstown Showdown before going upstate to visit
Canton McKinley and hosting powerful Cleveland Glenville. Wayne also figures to
be in the GWOC hunt.
North Canton Hoover (12-2)
Hoover reached the state semifinals behind the
exploits of Ohio’s Mr. Football award winner and the Ohio High player of the
year RB Erick Howard (5-10, 210, Sr). Howard rushed for 2,387 yards and 31
touchdowns. He also registered 98 tackles, three sacks and eight
tackles-for-loss. Hoover dropped its semifinal game to Cleveland St. Ignatius
Cincinnati St. Xavier (4-6)
From 2005-07, St. Xavier posted a 40-2 record
with a pair of 15-0 state championship seasons. But the Bombers took a step back
in 2008, losing several tight games and posting a losing record.
“You never settle for anything but the best,”
said St. X coach Steve Specht, who is back for his fifth year with the Bombers.
“But we felt the schedule we had was brutal. We played a number of teams ranked
in the top 20 in the country. We didn’t stay healthy. We lost three games by a
total of seven points. I don’t look at last year as a failure. We had a group of
young kids who worked hard. The ball just didn’t bounce our way last year.”
Specht welcomes back seven starters on offense
and five on defense.
“Our offensive line should be the strength of
our team,” Specht said. “We bring back our quarterback and we feel he is a major
college prospect. We have a nice stable of running backs. We have to find some
Luke Massa split time at quarterback last year
nursing an injury. He threw for 752 yards and three touchdowns a year ago and is
a Cincinnati recruit.
“He is the smartest quarterback I have
coached,” Specht said. “He makes unbelievable decisions. He is very even keeled
and poised in the pocket.”
Matt James is considered one of the nation’s
top offensive line prospects with offers from a number of top schools, including
Cincinnati, Notre Dame and Ohio State.
“We have leaned Matt out a little bit and he
looks good,” Specht said. “Other than the fact he’s got size and athleticism, if
you come to our practices you’ll see a kid who works as hard in practice as he
does in a game.”
St. X opens with Cincinnati Colerain in the
Crosstown Showdown. Four state championship teams – Indianapolis Cathedral,
Louisville Trinity, Fort Thomas (Ky.) Highlands and Cleveland St. Ignatius – dot
the schedule. Plus, the usual Greater Catholic League challenges of Cincinnati
Elder and Cincinnati Moeller loom large.
Canton McKinley (6-5)
Former Miami (Ohio) assistant Ron Johnson took
over the McKinley program last year and led the Bulldogs to a playoff berth in
his first season. McKinley dropped its playoff opener to Federal League rival
“It was very encouraging,” Johnson said. “We
came in following a 3-7 season and took the program over. We came in and played
so many young guys. We started out 0-2, but then we went on a pretty good run.”
Johnson welcomes back six offensive starters
and 10 on defense.
“It’s very exciting,” Johnson said. “Our kids
are locked in and focused. They got after it this off-season. I think this is a
mature, seasoned group and they have high aspirations.”
One of the youngsters that got playing time in
2008 was Kyle Ohradzansky, who started at quarterback as a sophomore. He threw
for 1,400 yards with 15 touchdowns against just seven interceptions.
DE Steve Miller is considered one of Ohio’s
top five junior prospects as he tallied 100 tackles, 11 sacks and 23
tackles-for-loss. He earned first-team All-Ohio honors as a sophomore and is in
line for a number of major college offers.
“He just plays with great effort,” Johnson
said. “He takes coaching very week. He is strong, uses good technique and just
plays very hard.”
McKinley could be a team to watch in the
Federal League. Nonleague games with Cleveland East Tech, Huber Heights Wayne
and rival Massillon Washington (which won that Week 10 showdown 17-0 last year)
all loom large.
The Minutemen were the No. 3 seed in Region 6
last year and their only loss of the season came at the hands of eventual
Division II state champion Sylvania Southview in the regional semifinals. This
season, they have larger plans in mind.
Courtney Avery has verbally committed to
Michigan and is ranked as the No. 28 senior in the state by Ohio High. He will
play corner in college and he previously committed to Stanford before switching
to UM. Avery has been Lexington’s varsity starting quarterback since the first
game of his freshman year and he was named first-team All-Ohio as a defensive
back last year. He was also stellar as a quarterback in 2008 when he threw for
2,600 yards with 26 touchdowns and just three interceptions (and completed 71
percent of his passes). Avery was named the Ohio Cardinal Conference offensive
player of the year.
Kevin Smith returns to lead the defense from
his linebacker spot and he had 80 tackles and seven sacks last year. He was
named honorable mention All-Ohio, first-team all-district and first-team
all-league. OL/DT David Willis is entering his third season as a starter and he
was named honorable mention all-district and second-team all-league. Zach Myers
and Willis are very comparable players. They are similarly-sized linemen that
start both ways and they claimed identical postseason awards last year (HM
all-district, second-team all-league).
Terrance Cyphers plays next to Smith at
linebacker and was nearly as productive last year. Cyphers had 78 tackles, five
sacks, one interception and was named second-team all-league. Tyler Hamman is
steady at strong safety and last year he had 65 tackles, one interception and
was named second-team all-league.
As if they weren’t already stockpiled with
talent, the Minutemen also welcome in a pair of talented transfers from
Mansfield Senior in Shaquille Jefferson and Kenya Coombs. Jefferson is the
younger half-brother of former Ohio State safety Jamario O’Neal and has
scholarship offers from Bowling Green and Central Michigan. Coombs was a starter
at quarterback and wide receiver at Mansfield, but he won’t play any QB for
Lexington unless something unfortunate happens to Avery.
Cincinnati Winton Woods (11-2)
The Warriors entered the 2008 playoffs as the
No. 1 seed in Region 8 and advanced to the regional finals where it fell to
eventual state runner-up Cincinnati Anderson in a tight 24-21 contest.
Dominique Brown runs the show at quarterback
and he is a verbal commitment to Cincinnati. He is ranked as the No. 56 senior
in the state by Ohio High and he was a second-team All-Ohio selection last year
when he rushed for over 1,000 yards earning unanimous player of the year
recognition in the Fort Ancient Valley Conference.
Jeremiah Goins has rushed for over 1,000 yards
in each of the last two seasons (over 1,300 yards last year) and is closing in
on Winton Woods’ career rushing record. He was a second-team All-Ohio pick last
Avery Cunningham captains the defense from his
safety spot and he is ranked as one of the top 150 seniors in the state by Ohio
Head coach troy Everhart calls Cameron Brown
“a sleeper” and says he has the potential to be “one of the better defensive
linemen in the state.”
Corey Webber started as sophomore last year
and had four interceptions. As for David Hampton, he will be a defensive back in
college, but Everhart says he’s a very good high school linebacker even though
he’s a bit light to be playing the position.
Cuyahoga Falls Walsh Jesuit (9-3)
Walsh was the No. 1 seed in Region 9 of
Division III last year and the Warriors move up to D-II this season. RB Cameron
Ontko is ranked as one of the top 150 seniors in the state by Ohio High and is a
Wisconsin recruit. Connor Cook is one of the top 10
junior quarterbacks in the state according to Ohio High. He has a strong arm and
4.71 speed in the 40.
The bad news for the Warriors is they have to
replace all five starters on the offensive line, including second-team All-Ohio
selection Pat McShane who is playing college football at Indiana. They also must
replace second-team All-Ohio running back Armand Dehaney who signed with Ball
Head coach Gerry Rardin is entering his 29th
season at Walsh.
Avon Lake (8-3)
Avon Lake was the No. 5 seed in the Region 6
playoffs last year and lost at Medina Highland in the first round. The Shoremen
return an impressive group of players and should be better this season.
OL Christian Pace is a verbal commitment to
Michigan. He is ranked as the 17th-best senior in the state by Ohio High, making
him the highest-rated Division II player in the state.
OL/DL Dan Schneider is ranked No. 40 in the
state by Ohio High and was a second-team All-Ohio selection last year and is a
Mike Mansnerus returns as the bell-cow
tailback. Last season, he piled up 1,700 rushing yards and 20 touchdowns in just
eight games. OT/DE Brian Mihalek is the top player in Avon Lake’s junior class
and he will be a two-way starter.
“He has great tools,” head coach Dave Dlugosz
said. “Good size and good speed (4.8 in the 40).”
FB/LB Nick Marinkov returns as a two-way
starter and he is a strong and quick player that “plays downhill and has great
hands out of the backfield.” DL Jon Rodgers is coming off an injury and Dlugosz
is happy to have him back due to his good size and athletic ability. Jordan
Market and Kevin Morissette are returning starters that bring leadership to the
secondary. The latter also plays offense as a wideout.
Dlugosz is entering his 17th season at Avon
Lake and has a career record of 168-32. The Shoremen won a state championship
under his watch in 2003.
The Chieftains were the No. 3 seed in the
Region 7 playoffs last year and lost to Louisville 7-0 in the second round in a
game where they turned the ball over seven times. (They knocked off Dublin
Jerome 23-7 in the first round.)
This year, they return one of the best
quarterbacks in the state regardless of division in Pat Angle. He was named
first-team All-Ohio last year and is entering his third season as Logan’s
starting quarterback. In 2008, Angle threw for 2,496 yards with 25 touchdowns –
both school records – and added 557 rushing yards and seven scores on the
ground. Angle set a school record when he threw for 324 yards in a 35-10 win
over Pickerington North last year.
Angle has a good No. 1 target in Mason Mays,
who was a second-team All-Ohio selection last year when he had 57 receptions for
852 yards and 13 touchdowns.
Michael Snider had over 100 tackles last year
and returns to lead the defense from his linebacker spot.
Ralph Robinson and Jeff Murphy are returning
starters, while Zach McDaniel was the backup tailback last year and moves into
the starting role this year.
Head coach Dale Amyx is entering his 20th
season at Logan and has a career record of 129-70. He has directed the
Chieftains to 12 Southeastern Ohio Athletic League championships and six trips
to the playoffs. He’s also been named SEOAL Coach of the Year five consecutive
Cincinnati Turpin (9-2)
The Spartans were the No. 4 seed in Region 8
last season (lost to Kings Mills Kings in the first round) and they have made
the playoffs four consecutive times. This year, with 14 returning starters (nine
offense, five defense) Turpin is primed for another quality season.
Wayne Dunham has racked up 2,679 career
rushing yards (1,221 last year, 1,458 as a sophomore in 2007) and 28 touchdowns
(15 last year, 13 in 2007) while averaging 6.4 yards per carry. He also has 24
career receptions for 311 yards and two touchdowns.
Jeff Groene is the best college prospect on
the team and he starts both ways at fullback and on the defensive line. In
addition to being a good blocker, he is a quality receiver out of the backfield
and has 25 career receptions for 215 yards (8.6 yards per reception) and four
touchdowns. He also has 73 career rushing yards (3.3 per carry) and six scores
on the ground.
Eric Martin took over starting quarterback
duties last year and was very solid in the role. He threw for 1,267 yards (57.2
percent) with 11 touchdowns and three interceptions. He added 290 rushing yards
(3.8 yards per carry) and five touchdowns. Considering he was able to do all of
that as a sophomore, Martin’s numbers could rise exponentially in 2009.
“We have tons of potential this year,” Turpin
head coach Rob Stoll said. “Our backfield, if healthy, should be one of the best
in the city. Jeff Groene is a big, bruising, athletic fullback who is often a
lead blocker. Wayne Dunham is looking to completely re-write our record book
“Defensively, Matt Kelly and Ken Mason will
lead an athletic but inexperienced group. Our secondary returns four players
that received extensive playing time, led by Zach Page. Our defense should be
aided by a strong kicking game with kicker Alec Gates and punter Brogan Orcutt
Stoll is entering his eighth season at Turpin
and has a career record of 53-25.
Toledo Central Catholic (10-1)
The Irish rolled through the regular season
undefeated and were the No. 1 seed in Region 6 last year, but fell in the first
round of the playoffs at home to Powell Olentangy Liberty (which moved up to D-I
this year). This season, TCC is loaded with talent as usual.
TE/DL Jamaal Tarrent is ranked as one of the
top 150 seniors in the state by Ohio High and has a scholarship offer from
Akron. Last season, he had 36 tackles, 15 tackles-for-loss and nine sacks.
Chris Boles is ranked as one of the top 30
juniors in the state by Ohio High’s Mark Porter and he is one of two main
starters back on the offensive line.
Dempsey is also high on Kyle Cameron who is
ranked as one of the top 50 juniors in the state by Ohio High.
Dave Walender returns as the starting
quarterback and he threw for 1,147 yards (53 percent completion) with 12
touchdowns and five interceptions last year. Three of his interceptions came in
the final game of the season when Central Catholic was upset in the first round
of the playoffs.
Nate Hobbs is a talented athlete that will
play all over the field. He is even Walender’s backup at quarterback.Last
season, Hobbs had 29 receptions for 546 yards and five touchdowns. He added 12
carries for 62 yards and another touchdown. The bad news for the Irish was that
Hobbs missed the final three games of the season due to injury (including the
Zach Messer returns to lead the secondary and he
had 56 tackles from his strong safety spot last season.
Central Catholic also has a solid kicker in
Kyle Burkhardt (5-of-9 on field goals with a long of 48; 30-for-30 on extra
“We have a nice group of kids coming back,”
head coach Dempsey said. “We need our tailback situation to sort itself out and
we have about five candidates, but no one with varsity experience for a season,
or even a game. We have to throw the ball better this year and we have our
quarterback and receivers back. We need to mix in the pass to help our running
backs develop. We have a solid foundation on the offensive line, but we can’t
afford any injuries.”
Columbus Marion-Franklin (10-2)
Marion-Franklin was the No. 4 seed in this
region last year and defeated Columbus Beechcroft in the first round of the
playoffs before falling to Columbus DeSales (which has moved down to D-III) in
the regional semifinals.
Verlon Reed calls the shots at quarterback and
he is ranked as one of the top 150 players in the state by Ohio High. He has
scholarship offers from Bowling Green, Kent State, Syracuse and Toledo. As a
junior in 2008, Reed threw for 1,200 yards, ran for 700 and accounted for a
total of 20 touchdowns.
But it’s far from a one-man show at
Marion-Franklin. The Red Devils return all five starters on their offensive
line, led by massive OT Aaron Shelton (6-6, 320, Sr.).
Returning to lead the defensive line is
Matthew Williams who is a player that often controls the middle of the line of
scrimmage by himself.
One of the very few two-way starters on this
deep team will be Dominique Marsh at wide receiver and strong safety.
Head coach Brian Haffele is confident that he
has a dangerous team coming back and with good reason. The Red Devils have a lot
of talent and they’re looking to turn up the heat on their opponents this year.
“Every year our No. 1 goal is to win our
conference (Columbus City League South),” Haffele said. “We’re fortunate enough
to have won it each of the last five years. Offensively, we have a lot of
seniors. We feel good at quarterback and on the offensive line. Most of skilled
guys are underclassmen. We’ll probably start eight juniors – all first-time
starters – but four of them played in the playoffs against Beechcroft and
DeSales for us.
New Carlisle Tecumseh (11-1)
The Arrows were the No. 2 seed in this playoff region last
year and they won a first-round game at home over Mount Orab Western Brown
before falling to Cincinnati Anderson.
Tecumseh has a total of 10 returning starters, many of
which play both ways. Karson Williams is ranked as the No. 78 senior in the
state by Ohio High and he anchors both lines. Riley Gault threw for 768 yards
with four touchdowns and six interceptions and should be much better in his
second season in the starting role.
The Arrows can point to a pair of talented, experience
running backs to lead the offense. Last season, Dustin Holmes rushed for 977
yards (7.8 per carry) and Kyle Sanning wasn’t far behind him with 914 yards (6.1
The leading returning performers on defense are Sanning
(110 tackles), Zeke Eier (106 tackles) and Dustin Holmes (91 tackles, four
“We return an experienced group of players that are
committed to the program,” head coach Kent Massie said. “They are a talented
group with a tremendous work ethic. The senior class will provide outstanding
leadership, focus and they have game-day experience.”
The Leopards were the No. 2 seed in the Region
7 playoffs last year and they advanced to the regional finals where they fell to
Columbus DeSales (which has moved down to D-III this year). Louisville defeated
Columbus Independence and Logan in the first two rounds of the postseason.
This year, the Leopards must say goodbye to
graduated quarterback Neal Seaman who was Ohio’s co-Offensive Player of the Year
in Division II last year.
The good news is that they return WR Bobby
Swigert who was a second-team All-Ohio selection last year (first-team
all-district, first-team all-league). He is ranked as the No. 45 senior in the
state by Ohio High and has scholarship offers from Akron, Ball State, Bowling
Green, Central Michigan, Cincinnati, Colorado, Eastern Michigan, Indiana, Kent
State, Miami U., Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio, Pittsburgh, Syracuse, Toledo, Western
Michigan and Wisconsin.
Hunter Potts was a second-team all-league
selection last year at linebacker and Joe Poyser was named honorable mention
all-league as a defensive lineman.
The team captains for 2009 are Swigert, Potts,
OT/DT Bob Gothot and TB/LB Jake Adkins.
Head coach Paul Farrah is entering his 10th
season at Louisville and has a career mark of 84-24. He is a former player at
Louisville and also played college football at Baldwin-Wallace as a defensive