2012 EMASS Football Preview

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Div 1 Big Three

Brockton

  • Last year's record: 5-6
  • Strength: Experience.
  • Concerns: Strength of schedule.
  • Coach: Peter Colombo (10th season, 70-23)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 10 lettermen
    • Matt Adams, OL, 2013
    • Max Castor, DE, 2013
    • Jepthe Celestin, TE/DE, 2013, 6-0, 220
    • Anthony Davis, OG/LB, 2013, 5-11, 240
    • Moise Edouard, RB/DB, 2013
    • Ryan Kelley, TE/LB, 2013, 6-2, 200
    • Aaron LeClair, RB/DB, 2014
    • Micah Morel, RB/DB, 2013, 5-11, 175
    • Joe Previte, OT/DT, 2013, 6-3, 250
    • Austin Roberts, QB/DB, 2013, 5-8, 165

After a 5-6 finish, Brockton is hungry to emerge as a playoff contender. "If teams take us lightly they're in for a rude awakening," coach Peter Colombo said. Senior Austin Roberts returns for his second year under center, and will be protected by fellow senior captains Anthony Davis, Joe Previte, and Malik Cooley-Walker. Micah Morel, who will also contribute in the backfield, returns as one of the state's top defensive backs. Senior Moise Edouard also emerged as a top defensive back for the Boxers, and will take some carries out of the backfield. Perhaps the Boxers' biggest advantage this season is simply being able to play at home. Last season, Brockton had just four home games while Rocky Marciano Stadium was renovated. This season, the team has seven.

Durfee

  • Last year's record: 1-9
  • Strength: Stability at quarterback.
  • Concerns: Youth on defense.
  • Coach: LaJhon Jones (2nd season, 1-9, 55-9 at Moses Brown (R.I.))
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 7 lettermen
    • Demtris Barros-Bates, DL, 2014, 6-1, 220
    • Alex Costa, OL, 2013, 5-10, 230
    • Emmanuel Fernandes, TE/DL, 2013, 5-11, 215
    • Joey Manchester, LB, 2013, 5-6, 170
    • Trevellis Oliver, QB, 2014, 5-10, 150
    • Isaih Slowik, WR/DB, 2013, 5-6, 145
    • Andre Torres, OL, 2015, 5-9, 235

For the first time in four seasons, Durfee has the same coach for two consecutive seasons in LaJhon Jones. With that stability also comes steadiness at the quarterback position in junior Trevellis Oliver. Last season, the Hilltoppers shuffled through three quarterbacks. After starting last season's Thanksgiving game, Oliver emerges as No. 1 on the depth chart. "He's good under pressure and throws well, and he's a good football mind that can run a little bit," Jones said of Oliver. Raheem Barzey returns as the starting running back and will captain the offense. On defense, Durfee has just two returning starters in linebacker Joey Manchester and lineman Emmanuel Fernandes. However, the experience stops there as the defense features seven sophomores.

New Bedford

  • Last year's record: 5-6
  • Strength: Team speed, positive attitude.
  • Concerns: Depth, experience.
  • Coach: Dennis Golden (9th season, 54-71)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games
  • showReturning: 16 lettermen
    • Tyler Arena, TE/DE, 2013, 6-0, 210
    • Corey Barboza, WR/DB, 2013, 5-10, 170
    • Chaysen Cabral, OL/DL, 2014, 5-11, 200
    • Hector Diaz, RB/DB, 2015, 5-10, 190
    • Hunter Fluegel, DB/WR, 2015, 5-11, 185
    • Cody Fumo, LB/WR, 2013, 6-0, 170
    • Darius Gaylor, OL/DL, 2013, 5-10, 245
    • TJ Hernandez, RB/DB, 2014, 5-10, 170
    • Mike LaJoie, WR/DB, 2013, 5-8, 155
    • Ricky Moraes, RB/LB, 2013, 5-9, 180
    • Kevin Nunes, WR/DB, 2014, 5-9, 170
    • Preston Perry, WR/DB, 2013, 5-11, 160
    • Douglas Pimental, OL/DL, 2015, 6-0, 255
    • Mike Rapoza, QB/DB, 2013, 5-10, 200
    • Troy Rocha, TE/LB, 2013, 5-9, 165
    • Carl Santos, TE/LB, 2013, 5-10, 170

The Whalers will debut a mostly new offensive line this season, where four of five starters graduated. That said, coach Dennis Golden will rely heavily on tight end and defensive end Tyler Arena, a 6-foot, 210-pound senior. Senior Michael Rapoza, who took snaps last season at wide receiver, running back, and quarterback, is the team's top quarterback. "He has a lot of leadership and he has the potential," Golden said. "He's a good runner and thrower, and we give him the run/pass option a lot." Rapoza is also the kicker. Junior Kevin Nunes returns as the top wide receiver, and junior Steve Azor is primed for a solid season. The speedy wideouts will also double as defensive backs, creating a strong foundation for the defense.

3 games to watch

Sept
7
Everett at Leominster

The Crimson Tide take a 25-game winning streak into this game against the reigning CMass Division 1 Super Bowl champs.

Oct
12

With Troy Flutie and company on one side and Ozzy Colarusso on the other side, all signs point to a great, high-scoring game.

Nov
10
Cathedral at Pope John

A rematch of the game that decided the Central Catholic Small winner in 2011. Cathedral won, 16-12, and went on to the Super Bowl.

Preseason Top 20

Rank Team Last year
1 Everett 13-0
2 BC High 10-3
3 Xaverian 6-5
4 St. John's Prep 4-6
5 Barnstable 7-5
6 Bridgewater-Raynham 9-2
7 Duxbury 13-0
8 King Philip 9-2
9 Natick 9-2
10 Walpole 9-3
11 Weymouth 9-2
12 Brockton 5-6
13 Mashpee 13-0
14 Reading 8-4
15 Andover 7-4
16 Needham 9-4
17 Mansfield 9-2
18 Central Catholic 6-5
19 Westford 6-5
20 Beverly 7-4