Today was the first day of school at BC, so I thought I would give the BMBS readers a preview of the 2008 football team.
JR Alex Hunt has the unenviable task of replacing one of the all-time great QBs to wear the maroon and white. Hunt is built just like the departed DeFilippis, however A.J. was slightly taller and a little more agile. Luckily, Hunt will not be relied on to make plays. With a stable of talented running backs, his job will be to simply manage the offense. Look for FR Michael Summers to see a good amount of playing time as well. Summers is an extremely talented athlete from Statesboro that many are tabbing as a future blue-chip college recruit. It will be interesting to see how Coach Herndon handles the QB battle between the experienced junior and the talented freshman.
Running Backs A+
The Cadets return the best backfield they have had since the late 90s. SR Caleb Collins runs like a greased pig. He is incredibly quick, shifty and his small stature allow him to hide behind the line. JR John Williams is the thunder to Collins' lightening. Williams has excellent vision and the ability to break tackles. Adding depth will be SR Cam White and SO Aric Brown. These two are talented enough to start on most teams in this area.
Offensive Line C+
The OL suffered the biggest hit to graduation as SR Joey Rutherford is the only returning starter. Rutherford was an All-Region performer in 2007. SR Alex Miles was the only other lineman to see action last season. SO Bradley Wilkerson would have been a regular last year, however he was relegated to the JV and Freshmen teams. Wilkerson is a giant and is a potential D1 recruit if he grows a few inches. JR Tommy Dodsworth has a very large frame and could have a breakout year if his work ethic improves. SO Luke Pashke will fill the last spot at tackle. Originally a linebacker, Pashke was the best candidate to fill the void at tackle. The Cadets have very little quality depth on the OL.
Tight Ends & Receivers B-
SR Joseph McCuen looked to be a potential All-Region TE in 2008, however a broken arm will sideline him for most of the season. JR Andrew Whelan has been forced into the starter's role and lacks the strength and pass-cathching ability McCuen had. JR Joey Friess returns as the slot man. I don't know who will play receiver this year. I am guessing RBs Cam White and Aric Brown might be split out and QB Michael Summers may also see some action. It doesn't really matter, though. Hunt is not much of a passing threat, so I doubt BC throws the ball more than five times a game.
Defensive Line A-
SR Clinton Joyce return for his third year as a starter and SR Timmy Smith returns as well. With Bill Brasky-esque stature, Smith surprised a lot of people last year and might draw some interest from some D1 schools. The Cadets will likely rotate a few people at the other DL spot. I expect JR Andrew Johnson to see a lot of playing time.
Defensive Ends C+
The Cadets lost two good DEs to graduation. JR Colin Oxnard and SO Kavie Rutherford will be the starters in 2008. Rutherford has the potential to be an All-Region performer by the time he graduates.
SR Stephen Danello is lone returning starter, however JR Taylor Robinson did see a good amount of playing time last year. This will be one of the best LB tandems in the region.
Defensive Backs B+
SR Dennis Green and JR Matt Shay have the potential to be All-Region performers. Green is a great cover man and Shay will knock you head off from his safety spot. JR Howie Pavlo was forced into a starting role last season due to injuries. Pavlo is small, but quick and tough; a lot like Kevin Sheahan. The remaining slot is up for grabs. SR Wynn More, JR Cody Davis, JR Will Summerlin, JR Kirk Long and JR Stephen Humphrey will all compete for playing time.
Special Teams B+
FR James Deal (yes, grandson of Coach Harry Deal '45) is the best kicker BC had had since Scott Shelton. If he continues to improve, he will draw D1 interest as a senior. QB Alex Hunt will likely handle the punting duties and will do a good job. RBs Caleb Collins and John Williams will be a dynamite set of return specialists. Kick coverage was a problem for the Cadets last year and is the only reason ST did not receive an A.