40 teams in 40 days – Day 4: Southern Columbia
Southern Columbia is one of the most successful football programs in Pennsylvania. Since the PIAA state playoffs have started in 1988, the Tigers have played in 13 Class A state finals, which is a state record.
The Tigers have won six state titles, tying Berwick Area and won five in a row from 2002 through 2006.
In 2011 the Tigers went 14-2, losing to Clairton in the Class A state final, 35-19.
But Roth has some big shoes to fill with key players moving onto graduation. Gone is Matt Moore, Brad Fegley, Tyler Levan and Casey Savitski and many more seniors.
“We had a lot of good skill players that performed at a high level for us last year,” said Roth. “We had a outstanding season with those kids and they were basically all first year starters that had to replace other people.”
Roth seems to reload every year and this season is no different.
We sat down with head football coach Jim Roth and talked to him about the big challenges he faces in 2012.
Q & A with Southern Columbia head football coach Jim Roth
How is your off-season going this summer?
It’s been good. In all the years I have been doing this, this is probably as good as any year I can remember in terms of our kids work ethic in the summer and the weight room has been good.
We run a formal speed training program in the summer. We had 45 kids at our speed camp. The kids are working real hard.
Who do you have coming back on offense?
We have to replace a lot of kids from last season. We have a little bit more to fill than last year. On the offensive side of the ball we only have three starters returning, two lineman and a tight end.
All the skill positions have to be replaced. But we feel we have some good players coming up through the system to the varsity level that can be productive.
But then again, they are going to be inexperienced and until they get out there iand compete, you don’t know what your going to get.
The difference between this year’s team and last year’s team is a lot of these kids that are going to step in to these roles this year are juniors, last year they were seniors.
These guys are going to be a little bit younger, but we will have them longer.
My quarterback this year will be senior Taylor Young who has a strong arm and is not a big kid. He throws the ball really well.
My fullback most likely will be Adam Feudale. He replaces Tyler Levan. The fullback position is a key running position in the Wing-T for us. Adam will be a junior and he is a strong kid and runs real hard. We are expecting a big year from him.
The half back position is wide-open right now. I have to say a kid by the name of Matt Lupoid has a potential to be a solid player therr. A blast from the past that could be in the mix is Jerry Marks son, Blake Marks. Marks will be a freshman this year. But if he performs anything like he has at the junior high level, he will have the chance to see some time.
At wideouts we are going to plug in two pretty good players that run real well, Bryce Parry and Joe Kleman.
Our tight end Jake Becker has been playing since he was a freshman.
We have a couple of holes up front in the line to fill.
Who do you have coming back on defense?
Defensively we have a few more players coming back. We have half the defense coming back. But we still have a couple of key positions to fill.
Kleman started at corner last year. Another good athlete in our secondary is Luke Rarig.
How about special teams?
Becker was a outstanding punter and is one of the top punters in the area. A kid by the name of Dylan Swank is our place kicker. Rarig is also a kicker.
To have a successful season you have to?
Get our kids some experience.
Southern Columbia opens at Pius X on September 1st.
40 teams in 40 days
Day 1 – Mount Carmel Area (4)
Day 2 – Manheim Central (3)
Day 3 – Delaware Valley (2)
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