Outlook: With seven or eight starters back on each side of the ball, the Eagles look like a team on the rise. They won the 7-on-7 tournament at M&T Bank Stadium, beating Washington-area power Good Counsel, and have an experienced line, which could spell trouble for A Conference foes.
Coach: Lawrence Smith
Last season: 13-1, No. 12 Postseason: Class 1A state champion
Outlook: The Poets won their fifth state title in seven years with a young team, and 17 returning starters should set the stage for another title run as well as bid for the Baltimore City championship. The defense, which returns a stellar corps of linebackers, shut out six teams and allowed only 47 points in winning its final 12 games.
6. Old Mill
Coach: Chad McCormick
Last season: 9-2, No. 5
Postseason: Class 4A East regional semifinalist
Outlook: The Patriots return nine defensive starters for first-year coach McCormick. They also bring back an experienced quarterback and running back but need to rework the line. Looking to avenge a 16-14 playoff loss to Broadneck in the season opener, the Patriots will vie for the Anne Arundel County title.
Coach:: Chuck Markiewicz
Last season: 10-2, No. 4
Postseason: Class 3A East regional finalist
Outlook: The Wildcats will simply reload the quarterback spot and keep the passes flying with plenty of experienced receivers to catch them. Old Mill gets the edge in the preseason with so many starters back, but Arundel returns 13 and could come away with its sixth straight Anne Arundel crown.
8. Archbishop Spalding
Coach: Mike Whittles
Last season: 9-3, No. 7
Postseason: MIAA B Conference champion