40 Teams in 40 Days – Day 6 – Plymouth-Whitemarsh (1)
At the quarterback position, Connor Hanlon is gone due to graduation. Noah Allanoff is penciled in as the starting quarterback this season. He’s going to be a senior and was the backup quarterback and JV quarterback last year. Noah has a strong arm and is very intelligent. He can really throw the deep ball. He’s good at reading the defense and is a good runner.
“He developed in that spot after playing another position his sophomore year. He has really worked hard to prepare for this season. He’s going to be a threat running the ball like we do every year with our quarterbacks. He can throw the ball.”
The strength of the offense is the offensive line. The Colonials return four linemen from last year. The leader on the line is left tackle Ryan Bishoff. He’s a three-year starter and a Virginia commit.
“Ryan is our anchor on the offensive line. He’s a guy we’re going to run behind a lot this year.”
Steve Kovacic is the left offensive guard. He played a little bit, as a freshman and this is his fourth year playing on the varsity level.
“He’s a guy that is getting some division one looks. He’s a big kid. He and Ryan on the left side is a tough matchup for any defense.”
The returning center is Anthony Casselli and he’s a two-year starter. Anthony is very athletic and moves well. He’s a guy that can drive block very well.
“Last year he approved tremendously and has one of the best work ethics I have seen from a kid.”
Brett Highland is the right offensive guard. He’s been playing since his sophomore year and is athletic. He’s a guy that can get out and pull from the guard spot.
The left offensive tackle is a transfer from Archbishop Carroll. He’s Joe DeSanto. Joe was first team All-Catholic AA Division at offensive lineman and he’s a division one prospect.
“He’s a big kid and is extremely athletic for his size. He’s a good addition to the offensive line this year.”
Alex DeCarlo is the sixth lineman and a very solid player. He can play multiple positions on the line if needed.
“We’re a two back, run the ball team. We’re excited to run the ball behind these guys this year.”
The Colonials lost two solid running backs from last year, Jose Mora-Vega and Brian Afflick.
The feature back this year is going to be junior Nafeese Nasir. He started on defense last year at strong safety. He’s very explosive, great runner and has great vision. He has good speed and is dangerous in open field.
“He really could have been the feature back last year, but there were seniors in front of him.”
Jake Winterbottom is the other back. He has 4.6 speed at the fullback position.
“He has shown the ability to be a break away back. He’s a tough runner and very physical.”
The third guy in the rotation is Manny Jones. He played in seven games last year and he averaged over six yards a carry. Senior Ray Clarkson will get some carries as well.
“We have good speed with this group and some experience.”
The Colonials have three guys returning with experience at the wide receiver and tight end positions.
Jimmy Rodgers is a returning two-year starter at split end. He led the team in catches and touchdowns at the receiver position. He’s a guy that can stretch the defense.
“He’s a guy that goes up for the ball and runs great routes. He has great hands and is a great down hill blocker.”
Ray Clarkson returns and he’s more of a hybrid receiver. He can run, catch and block well. Jarid Hutchins was a backup last year and will get some playing time this year. He’s going to be a senior.
Luke Mascio returns at tight end. Last year he was primarily a blocker. He’s an athletic kid. He’s a basketball player too. So, he has great feet and moves well. This year look for the Colonials to throw the ball more to him.
“We’re blessed this year to have a bunch of guys coming back who have been in the program for a while and understand what we’re trying to do. We got size and speed.”
Let’s start with the boys up front. The Colonials return three players with a lot of experience on the defensive line.
Ryan Bishoff will be playing nose guard this year. He’s a guy that can fill the gaps and control the center.
“I feel he’s going to be a tough matchup for any center this year.”
The two defensive tackles are Joe DeSanto and Alex DeCarlo.
“Both of those guys are athletic and have experience.”
Luke Mascio will be one of the defensive ends. Blaise Gravinese will be a defensive end and/or inside linebacker.
Steve Kovacic will play a little bit of nose. Brett Highland will play a little bit of defensive tackle and end. River Chesky is another guy that may see time on the line.
“I think our strength on the line is going to be our run stop ability. I think we’re going to be tough and athletic.”
Matt Melusky is the only returning starter at linebacker. Last year he started at outside linebacker and this year he’s going to play inside linebacker.
“He’s is the type of kid who has football smarts and great instincts. He’s a guy that is always around the ball.”
The other linebacker is Ray Clarkson. He got a little time playing last year. He will be the other inside linebacker.
Jake Winterbottom is the outside linebacker/strong safety. He played some strong safety last year. Sophomore Christian Jones is another guy to keep an eye on. He’s very athletic and can run.
Hank Pratt is another kid that will see time and likes to hit and get down field.
“I think we have good overall speed with this group. All these guys are good tacklers.”
In the secondary, the Colonials have two guys returning with some experience.
Jarid Hutchins is one of the guys battling for the spot. Right now Jarid has the edge for the starting job.
“Jarid has shown some nice things this offseason and he’s tall and rangy.”
Manny Jones is the other guy battling for that corner spot.
“Manny will be the third corner in that mix.”
Jimmy Rodgers is the other corner. He was first team all-league at corner.
“Jimmy is a solid player for us. He’s a shutdown corner and great at man-to-man coverage. He tackles well and make plays on balls.”
Nafeese Nasir is the starting free safety.
“He will be running things in the secondary.”
Billy Trice who will be in the rotation at corner.
“We have nice size in the secondary. Our playmaking ability with this group is a plus. All these guys can make plays.”
Special Teams Preview:
Nafeese Nasir and Jimmy Rodgers among others could be back there as kick and punt returners.
Blaise Gravinese is back at punting. Their kicker from last year got hurt in Lacrosse and will miss the whole season. Right now this is an open position.
Jake Winterbottom returns at long snapper.
Head Coach: Dan Chang
2013 Record: 8-3
Key Starters Lost: SR. QB Connor Hanlon, SR. RB/LB Jose Mora-Vega, SR. Connelly DT
Offensive Starters Returning: (7)
Sr. Ryan Bischoff OT,
Sr. Steve Kovacic OG,
Sr. Anthony Casselli C,
Sr. Brett Highland OG,
SR. Jimmy Rodgers WR,
SR. Ray Clarkson WR,
JR. Luke Mascio TE
Defensive Starters Returning: (7)
Sr. Ryan Bischoff NG,
Sr. Steve Kovacic DT,
Sr. Jimmy Rodgers DB,
SR Matt Melusky ILB,
Jr. Manny Jones DB,
Jr. Nafeese Nasir FS,
SR. Alex DeCarlo DT
Key Newcomers: Sr. Joe DeSanto OT/DE, JR. Jake Winterbottom RB/LB, SR. Noah Allanoff QB/LB, SR. Jarid Hutchins WR/DB, So. Christian Jones RB/LB
D1 (FBS & FCS) Prospects: SR Ryan Bischoff OT/DT (University of Virginia Verbal), SR Steve Kovacic, SR. Joe DeSanto – both drawing FCS Interest
Key Stats: 3 Consecutive Undefeated League Play and League Titles and 3 Consecutive District 1 Playoff Berths
2014 Coaches Outlook: Looking to continue our undefeated league play, win a league championship and progress through the District 1 playoffs.
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