2012 EMASS Football Preview

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Div 4 Catholic Central (Large)

Archbishop Williams

  • Last year's record: 1-9
  • Strength: Defensive and offensive lines.
  • Concerns: Team depth.
  • Coach: Bill Kinsherf (17th season, 83-82-1)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games

Much of Archbishop Williams' success hinders on how well it controls the trenches. The line is full of size, skill and experience. Both lines will be anchored by seniors Andrew McLaughlin, Mike Connaire, and Austin Oringer. They hope to open holes for junior tailback Kylan Philbert-Richardson, who rushed for over 700 yards last season. The promising back leads a running attack that will have Pat McAleny, a second-year starter, at quarterback.

Arlington Catholic

  • Last year's record: 9-1
  • Strength: Offensive line and overall defense.
  • Concerns: Offense and ability to score.
  • Coach: Serge Clivio (22nd season, 114-118)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games

The Cougars had a turnaround season in 2011 after a 2-9 campaign the year before. A defense led by linebacker Anthony Reale is out to prove it was no fluke. The graduation of star running back Bernard Lynch is a concern. Much of the offense was centered around Lynch's versatility. The Cougars will now rely on an offensive line led by a trio of seniors - Harry Thom, John Strezo, and Garrett Collins - to make life easy for the skilled position players.

Austin Prep

  • Last year's record: 3-7
  • Strength: Experience.
  • Concerns: Overall team strength and health.
  • Coach: Bill Maradei (34th season, 34th season overall, 238-108-4; 20th at Austin Prep 138-45)
  • Playing surface: Grass
  • Schedule: Complete list of games

There's no question who the focus of the Cougars success will be this fall. AP will go as far as Dan Arena and Nick Vitale can take them. Both Arena and Vitale play all three facets of the game and are crucial contributors to all three. If either of them go down Prep may be in trouble but don't be surprised if their play propels the Cougars into contention.

Bishop Fenwick

  • Last year's record: 3-8
  • Strength: Returning experienced starters.
  • Concerns: Depth.
  • Coach: Dave Woods (15th season, 97-60)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games

Rufus Rushins is out to make sure a sophomore slump doesn't happen. The 6-foot-1, 225-pound tailback rushed for 1,100 yards a year ago and will be heavily relied offensively. Rushins will be guided by an offensive line that returns four starters and a senior quarterback, Fran Hannon, who also serves as one of the captains. Look for the Crusaders to be explosive out of their spread formation as they make a push toward the postseason.

Cardinal Spellman

  • Last year's record: 12-1
  • Strength: Well-balanced on both sides of the ball.
  • Concerns: Experience. Replacing a number of 2012 seniors both offensively and defensively.
  • Coach: Ron St. George (5th season, 32nd season 222-105-4; 5th season with Cardinal Spellman 30-18)
  • Playing surface: Grass
  • Schedule: Complete list of games

St. George and the Cardinals are looking to take the final step in turning a once struggling squad into a Super Bowl champion. The Cardinals have fallen in the state title game back-to-back seasons and are relying on returning quarterback Tim Burke to propel them toward a title. Drew Belton will be looked upon to anchor a strong offensive line, while junior safety Rorey Donovan takes on a much larger load in 2012.

St. Mary's

  • Last year's record: 9-2
  • Strength: Team speed and versatility.
  • Concerns: Skill positions.
  • Coach: Matt Durgin (5th season, 31-13 at St. Mary's)
  • Playing surface: Artificial turf
  • Schedule: Complete list of games

A major question mark for Durgin was tailback and who would get the bulk of the carries. For years All-Scholastic Todd Collier has been the one whose number was called, and rightfully so, but it seems like a different Collier will be the feature back now, Jordan Collier. Jordan played in spots last season and seems to be ready to carry the load. Also look for returning defensive back Victor Molle to have an impact as he may also take snaps under center.

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