1999 FALL SPORTS PREVIEW; FOOTBALL

THE BALTIMORE SUN

BALTIMORE CITY

Carver Bears

Coach: Ron Frierson (18-31-1).

1998 record: 6-4.

Top players: Michael Handy, Sr., RB-DB; Corie Rorey, Sr., C-LB; Joel Gamble, Sr., TE-DE; Dwayne Luckett, Jr., OG-DT.

Outlook: Only four starters are back for the Bears, of the city's West Division, but 46 came out. The commitment is there among those in camp, but the relative youth could make it difficult for the Bears to improve on last season's effort.

City Knights

Coach: George Petrides (career: 142-87-1).

1998 record: 7-3.

Top players: Jawan Yancey, Sr., QB; Brandon Watson, Sr., WR-DB; Todd Galloway, Jr., WR-DB; James Clash, Jr., G; Melvin Bond, Jr., OT; Nathaniel Clayton, So., OT; Greg Perkins, So., G.

Outlook: The Knights return eight starters and have a good combination in Yancey, who is a threat to run or pass. Watson and Yancey are quality receivers, and Clayton (6-4, 260) anchors a more experienced line.

Archbishop Curley Friars

Coach: Sean Murphy (6-14).

1998 record: 3-7.

Top players: Antwan Lide, Sr., WR-DB; Felix Milburn, Sr., QB-DB; John Witherspoon, Sr., LB; Pat Patillo, Jr., RB-LB; Williams Marcus, Jr., RB-DB; Joe Paul, Jr., OT; Zac Adams, Jr., G-DT; Brooks Norris, Jr., G.

Outlook: Nine starters return to the MIAA B Conference program, which lost by two points to league runner-up John Carroll, and only, 10-0, to league champ McDonogh. "We have potential, but we need to just cut down on mistakes and be more consistent," Murphy said.

Douglass Ducks

Coach: Carrell Reavis (first year).

1998 record: 8-2.

Top players: Davon Collier, Sr., G-DT; Russell Barnes, Sr., OT-DT; Kenneth DeGross, Jr., RB; Phillips Henderson, Jr., QB; Corey Green, So., C.

Outlook: After 29 years as an assistant to Forest Park's Obie Barnes, Reavis has his first job as a head coach, replacing retired David White. The Ducks, runners-up in the city West Division, return five starters.

Dunbar Poets

Coach: Ben Eaton (career: 5-5).

1998 record: 5-5.

Top players: Jamal Lloyd, Sr., OT-DT; Jason Blowe, Sr., OL-DL; Terrence Gibson, Sr., OG-DT; Gary Cox, Sr., DE; James Matthews, Sr., LB-C; D'Andre Dorsey, Sr., RB-DB; Jason Scott, Sr., QB; Antoine Colvin, Jr., OL-DL; Darnell Baylor, Jr., RB.

Outlook: The Poets, of the city's East Division, missed the playoffs for the first time since '93, when it reached the first of five straight state semifinals on the way to winning two state titles. Eaton builds his hopes around a veteran line that includes Colvin (6-5, 290), Blowe (6-2, 290), Lloyd (6-3, 260) and Gibson (6-7, 340), but has to construct a viable backfield.

Edmondson Redskins

Coach: Pete Pompey (170-88).

1998 record: 7-3.

Top players: Eddie Colbert, Sr., QB-DB; Raytron Leak, Sr., RB-LB; Justus McLeod, Sr., WR-DB; Jason Murphy, Jr., OL-DL.

Outlook: Colbert (83 percent passing ratio, 16 TDs) returns, along with second-team All-Metros Murphy (6-3, 245) and Leak. Murphy had 15 sacks, and Leak, eight sacks, five interceptions, 301 receiving yards for four touchdowns and rushed for 1,201 yards and four more scores. McLeod caught nine touchdown passes for last year's Baltimore City West Division champs.

Forest Park Foresters

Coach: Obie Barnes (107-103-6).

1998 record: 6-5.

Top players: Chris Cummings, Sr., RB-DB; Jared Washington, Sr., WR; Jason Miles, Sr., OL-DL; Terrell Robinson, Sr., OL-DL; Nigel Smith, Sr., C; Steven Shields, Sr., OL; Charles Wiley, Sr., QB; Terell Patterson, Jr., DB; Derrick Parker, Jr., LB; Anwar Shepherd, Jr., LB.

Outlook: Forest Park narrowly missed winning the city's West Division during a season in which it lost four games by a touchdown or less. But with the return of 10 starters, including Cummings (1,200 yards, 17 TDs), the Foresters hope to challenge again as well as to reach the 1A state playoffs for the second straight season.

Cardinal Gibbons Crusaders

Coach: Scott Ripley (3-6).

1998 record: 3-6.

Top players: Josh Yousico, Sr., OL; Juwann Womack, Sr., LB; Mike Woodland, Sr., RB; Craig King, Jr., QB; Joe Chambers, Jr., RB; Derrick McPherson, Jr., RB.

Outlook: Hoping for an above average season in last year's MIAA B Conference, the Crusaders were disappointed. But 13 starters are back. In addition, speedster Mitchell Brown has transferred from Sparrows Point, where Ripley said he was that program's two-time MVP.

Gilman Greyhounds

Coach: Biff Poggi (16-3).

1998 record: 10-0.

Top players: Ryan Boyle, Sr., QB; Mike Faust, Sr., RB-LB; Nick Nocar, Sr., RB- DB; Lance Zimmerman, Sr., DB; Richard Touhey, Sr., TE; Franco Gould, Sr., DB; Randy Vane, Sr., G-DE; Dan Zito, Jr., OT-DT; Greg Lotz, Jr., TE-DE; Starrett Esworthy, Jr., RB-LB.

Outlook: The Greyhounds return 10 starters from a program that earned the school's first unbeaten record over a 10-game schedule and finished No. 1 in the Baltimore area rankings. Hopes of defending the MIAA A Conference title rest primarily with on All-Met Boyle and Faust, a 5-11, 220-pounder who can bench press 375 pounds.

Lake Clifton Lakers

Coach: James Monroe (27-16).

1998 record: 3-7.

Top players: Ronald Jefferson, Sr., QB; Brandon Haughton, Sr., DT-OT; William McRee, Jr., C; Dennis Lindsey, Jr., WR.

Outlook: Monroe's Lakers, of the city's East Division, return only three starters. But the focus is there. 'I've got 22 kids who are working faithfully, and things are looking pretty good,' Monroe said. 'Haughton [6-7, 290] came to practice looking in top-top shape.

Mervo Mustangs

Coach: John Blake (41-64-1).

1998 record: 3-7.

Top players: Joe Brown, Sr., OT-DE; Sean Brown, Sr., DT-C; Miles Richardson, Sr., RB; Kevin Young, Jr., QB; Mark Mason, Jr., SS-RB.

Outlook: Seven starters are back for the Mustangs, of the city's East Division, who will "go as far as our offensive line takes us," according to Blake. "Our line is a question, but we'll be good in most of the other phases and, hopefully, wind up turning some heads."

Mount St. Joseph Gaels

Coach: Mike Working (45-26-1).

1998 record: 5-5-1.

Top players: Chad Allen, Sr., LB-SS; Rob Abiamiri, Sr., WR.

Outlook: The Gaels, of the MIAA A Conference, return a solid corps of players to a program that lost only 17-14 to league champ Gilman, and which won five of its final seven games after an 0-4 start. "We're very green in spots, but I think this is a team that'll get much stronger as the season progresses and finish well," Working said.

Northern Vikings

Coach: Shelly Rambeau (6-14).

1998 record: 4-6.

Top players: James Matthews, Sr., RB; Warren Land, Sr., C; Justin Veney, Jr., QB.

Outlook: Graduation has left the Vikings with only three starters returning to competition in the city's East Division. "We start out with a difficult schedule, so we'll know fairly early what we're made of," said Rambeau.

Northwestern Wildcats

Coach: Wayne Jackson (12-38).

1998 record: 0-9.

Top players: Nathaniel Eggleston, Sr., OT-DT; David Pitts, Jr., OG-DT; Jarrod Simmons, Jr., DB.

Outlook: The Wildcats, of the city's West Division, lost all of their starters and will call as successful season one which nears the .500 mark. "It'll be a teaching year," Jackson said.

Patterson Clippers

Coach: Roger Wrenn (172-83-2).

1998 record: 10-1.

Top players: Matt Belcastro, Sr., OL-DL; Tony Smithson, Sr., LB; Eric Myers, Sr., LB; Raschid Scott, Sr., LB; Alexis Carter, Sr., SE-DB; Matt Williams, Jr., OL-DL; Anthony Krumpton, Jr., DB; Dominique Williams, Jr., DT.

Outlook: The Clippers went unbeaten for the East Division crown under 26th-year coach Wrenn. Belcastro (6-3, 190), a second-team All-Metro, is among seven starters and several veterans who are back for the champs.

Poly Engineers

Coach: John Hammond (8-3).

1998 record: 8-3.

Top players: Cory Weathers, Sr., TE; Marquez Colman, Sr., TE-DE; Hassan Brown, Sr., DB; Daniel McMichael, Sr., RB; Jonashan Rogers, Sr., LB; Donta Wardell, Sr., OT; Davanan Salick, Sr., QB; James Oliver, Sr., SE; Jeusus Hernandez, Sr., G; Donald Smith, Sr., OT-DT.

Outlook: The Engineers return eight starters to a team that was runner-up in the city's East Division. Hammon lost 22 players to graduation, but has a group which knows what he wants.

Southern Bulldogs

Coach: Jack Nehsmann (27-70).

1998 record: 2-7.

Top players: Josh Bowyer, Sr., TE-LB; Kenneth Cole, Sr., DE; Troy Franklin, Sr., WR-DB; James Harlow, Sr., OT-DT; Dennis Fullwood, Jr., RB-LB; Tramon Hopkins, Jr., RB-LB.

Outlook: Nehsmann, of the city's West Division, is enthusiastic with nine returning starters and a turnout of 33 players on the varsity. "We lost four games that were close until we made mistakes," Nehsmann said. "I think our prospects of improving are very good."

Southwestern Sabers

Coach: Vernon Joines (2-8).

1998 record: 2-8.

Top players: Mike Jones, Sr., QB; Mark Davis, Sr., OL-DL; Travis Ezi, Sr., WR-DB.

Outlook: Joines had an initial turnout of 45 players on the varsity, and hopes to turn a few heads in the city's West Division. Line play will be critical in the development of the defensive and offensive secondary areas.

Walbrook

Coach: Kelvin Bridges (14-26).

1998 record: 2-8

Top players: George Washington, Sr., TE-DE; Calvin Booker, Sr., RB-FS; Antonio Williams, Sr., WR-DB; Eugene Graham, Jr., QB.

Outlook: Washington, a 6-3, 230-pounder who runs a 4.6-second 40-yard dash, is the epitome of the Warriors' good speed and size. They'll need it if they're going to win back the City West Division title that Edmondson took from them last season.

Pub Date: 9/02/99

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