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September 01, 2015
By: Butch Harmon

Ingham-Eaton football previews


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Ingham-Eaton County football capsules

Lansing Sexton Big Reds
League: CAAC Blue
Coach: Daniel Boggan
2014 Record: 13-1, 7-0 1st
Players lost: Avonte Bell (RB/LB), Rayshawn Wilbon (DB), Malick Mack (QB), Javon Wray (RB)
Players returning: Marshon Blake (DL), Devin Taylor (DB), Kiston Branson (DB), C.J. Brown (LB), T.J. Harvey (DE), Michael Lynn (QB), Tyron Hart (LB), Karey Faulkner (RB)
Outlook: The Big Reds made history when they reached Ford Field and played for the Division 4 state championship. While a number of key players have graduated from last year’s team, the Big Reds still have plenty of talent. Defense will be a strong point, especially the secondary, where senior cornerback Devin Taylor (5'10", 170 pounds) is one of the premier lock-down corners in the state. Up front, Marshon Blake (6'2", 240) is a powerful force along the line. Senior linebacker C.J. Brown and senior defensive back Kiston Branson also earned all-conference honors last year. Senior T.J. Harvey (6'0", 210) is a defensive end, while junior Tyron Hart (6'0", 225) is a hard-hitting young linebacker. On offense, sophomore quarterback Michael Lynn (5'10", 165) has plenty of potential, as does junior running back Karey Faulkner (5'10", 205). Junior tight end/defensive end Khari Foy-Walton is another young player to watch.

Grand Ledge Comets
League: CAAC Blue
Coach: Matt Bird
2014 Record: 7-4, 5-2 2nd
Players lost: JT Houghton (WR), Doug Thomas (OL), Jonathan Dobie (LB), Cassell Jones (DB), Stefan Jones (DB)
Players returning: Ba Blamo (RB), Malek Adams (WR/DB), Matt Lloyd (DL), Cooper Alspaugh (DL), Cam Collins (WR/DB), Caden Evert (RB/DE), Robert Willoughby (LB), Bryce McMann (OL), Jordan Goebel (DE/TE)
Outlook: The Comets return plenty of talent from a team that tied for second place in the CAAC Blue last year and reached the district final before falling to East Kentwood, 17-14. Senior quarterback Jacob Baldwin (6'3", 195 pounds) gives the Comets a solid passing threat, while senior running back Ba Blamo (6'0", 205) is a powerful speedster who gives the team a threat at running back. Senior wideout Malek Adams (6'2", 170) caught 41 passes for 500 yards and seven scores last year and is a returning all-conference player. Senior Cam Collins (6'2", 170) is another talented receiver, while senior Caden Evert (5'10", 180) is another talented running back. At quarterback, senior Luke Lalumia and sophomore Nolan Bird (6'2", 170) are in the mix. Senior Bryce McMann (6'3", 250) returns to head up the offensive line. The Grand Ledge defense has a number of strong players returning. Up front, seniors Cooper Alspaugh (6'0", 215) and Matt Lloyd (6'3", 285) are a pair of returning all-conference players. Senior Robert Willouoghby (5'10", 240) heads up the linebacking crew. Senior defensive end Jordan Goebel (6'4", 220) is another returning all-conference player.     

Lansing Everett Vikings
League: CAAC Blue
Coach: Marcelle Carruthers
2014 Record 6-4, 5-2 2nd
Players lost: Damon Terry (WR), Lane Porter (QB), Marvin Wright (RB/LB), Rhett Blackman (WR), Leondre Terry (WR), Julian Mills (OL), Tony Knox, Jr. (DL), Bryan Jones (DB)
Players returning: Tyree Pruitt (DL), Ja'leel Jones (OL), Alfonso Reyna (OL/DL)
Outlook: The Vikings suffered heavy graduation losses from a team that finished in a three-way tie for second in the league and qualified for the playoffs for the third straight season. The Vikings will build the lines around a pair of all-conference players. Senior Tyree Pruitt is a quick, active playmaker on the defensive line, while Ja’leel Jones (6'3", 290 pounds) is a road grader on the offensive line. Junior lineman Alfonso Reyna (6'4", 275) is a big, talented lineman to watch on both sides of the football. Seniors Isaih Williams (TE/LB) and Markeese Reynolds (LB/TE) will play key roles, along with LeAndre Wright (WR/DB), Marice Reynolds (LB/TE), and Malik Windham (OL).   

East Lansing Trojans
League: CAAC Blue
Coach: Bill Feraco
2014 Record: 1-8, 1-6 6th  
Players lost: Nathan Goodman (OL), Ike Nnanabu (RB/DB), Reece Piotter (QB), Parker Underwood (TE)
Players returning: Kentre Patterson (WR), Jacob Smith (DE), Heath Williams (OT/DT), Reid Burton (FB/DE), David Nickson (OL/DL), Noah Holbrook (RB/SS), Blake Underwood (RB/SS), Anthony Nguyen (G/DE), Connor Charamella (QB)
Outlook: The Trojans graduated some key performers on offense, including tight end Parker Underwood, who is now at Western Michigan University. The Trojans do return junior all-conference wide receiver Kentre Patterson (6'1", 175 pounds), a burner who can take the top off a defense. Reid Burton (6'2", 220) has excellent size and could provide the Trojans with a battering ram at fullback. Heath Williams (6'2", 280) is a physical force at both offensive and defensive tackle. Senior Jacob Smith (6'1", 210) earned honorable-mention all-conference honors and is a force at defensive end. Senior Noah Holbrook and sophomore Blake Underwood are a pair of running backs to watch, while sophomore Connor Charamella is a promising young quarterback.   

Lansing Eastern Quakers
League: CAAC Blue
Coach: Troy Matlock
2014 Record: 1-8, 1-6 6th
Players lost: Quion Lowe (WR), Trent Johnson (QB), Anthony Allen (WR), Josh Alston (LB), Tarrik Wilson (LB)
Players returning: Aurelius Christian (SB/SS), LaTone Smith (RB/CB), Chase Davis (TE/LB), Dezmond Davis (QB), Dalton Bailey (WR/FS)
Outlook: The Quakers have a new coach and are looking for improvement. Senior running back LaTone Smith (5'9", 190 pounds) earned all-conference honors last year and will provide a ground threat. Senior Aurelius Christian (5'9", 190) earned honorable-mention all-conference honors last year. He is a sparkplug at slot back and a hard-hitting strong safety. Chase Davis (6'1", 180) also earned all-conference honors and will play tight end and defensive end. Sophomore quarterback Dezmond Davis (6'2", 170) is a talented young signal caller to watch.

Holt Rams
League: CAAC Blue
Coach: Chad Faulk
2014 Record: 3-6, 3-4 5th  
Players lost: Andy Adado (OL/DL), Tyler Todd (RB), Garrett Dickinson (QB), Jackson Smith (DB), Brandon Brinkman (OL), Nick Forgrave (OL)
Players returning: Trent Stone (RB/DB), Amaan Payne (WR/SS), Michael Dunlap (CB), Jacob Pingston (OL), Kolin Leyrer (QB), Deshaun Lowery (DB), Dylan Reich (OL/DL), Mitchell Kauffman (OL), Alex Stockwell (OL/DL), Drew Stavischeck (WR), Ivan Barkley (DL), Connor  Kelenske (LB)
Outlook: The Rams have a new head coach, and the team has plenty of enthusiasm thanks to the return of several key players. Senior running back Trent Stone (5'10", 190 pounds) is a big-time back who rushed for 1,642 yards and 21 touchdowns last year. Junior Kolin Leyrer (6'0", 170) returns at quarterback. The Rams have a pair of solid receivers in seniors Amaan Payne (6'0", 197) and Drew Stavischeck. Holt will have a solid offensive line, anchored by senior tackle Jacob Pingston (6'3", 250) and senior guard Mitchell Kauffman (6'1", 300). The Rams defense also looks strong. Payne is a returning all-conference player at strong safety. Junior cornerback Deshaun Lowery is a speedster and lock-down corner, while Stone and all-conference cornerback Michael Dunlap also return to what should be a dominant secondary. Seniors Ivan Barkley and Alex Stockwell return to the defensive line with senior Connor Kelenske returning at linebacker.       

Okemos Chiefs
League: CAAC Blue
Coach: Jack Wallace
2014 Record: 6-4, 5-2 2nd
Players lost: Chris Nelson (RB), Mark Louma (TE), Sam Horton (DL), Christian Moore (LB), Kome Johnson (LB), Kyle Krumm (DB)
Players returning: Chaz Richardson (WR/DB), Ben Buttery (RB/DL), Paris Williams (RB/DL), Matt Mullen (TE/LB), Sam Moreno (OL/LB), Arsh Mir (OL/DL), Will Kordenbrock (WR/DB), Ian Scott (WR/DB), Edward Brennan (TE/LB), Danny Rhodes (OL/DL)
Outlook: The Chiefs returned to the playoffs last year and turned in a winning season. Graduation day, however, hit Okemos hard, and several new starters must be developed. The Chiefs do have some talented players waiting in the wings. Look for Dalis Williams (5'11", 170 pounds) to make an impact at running back.

Haslett Vikings
League: CAAC Red
Coach: Charlie Otlewski
2014 Record: 4-5, 2-3 4th
Players lost: Alec Dunckel (WR/LB), Trace Woodworth (LB), Lee Mott (DB), Andrew Harris
Players returning: Rob Boughton (OL), Derek Wroblak (WR/P), Blake Roe (FB/DL), Brandon Allen (WR/DB), Justin Kuchnicki (OT), Mykal Stinson (RB/DE), Jake Tahaney (QB), Evan Harden (TE), Jason McClure (T/DT), Winston Mallory (T/DT)
Outlook: With a number of big, powerful linemen on both sides of the football, Haslett should be able to control the line of scrimmage. The offensive line is a strong suit, with all-conference center Rob Boughton (6'2", 285 pounds) returning, along with junior tackle Justin Kuchnicki (6'5", 290), who is one of the top junior linemen in the area. Seniors Jason McClure (6'5", 238) and Winston Mallory (6'3", 255) are also in the mix up front. Haslett also has a jumbo-sized backfield. Junior running back Mykal Stinson (6'2", 230) is a strong runner, while all-conference defensive lineman Blake Roe (6'2", 285) lines up at fullback. Senior all-conference player Brandon Allen is dangerous at running back or as a receiver, while senior all-conference player Derek Wroblak plays wide receiver and punter. Senior Jake Tahaney (5'11", 180) returns to pilot the attack. On defense, Roe leads the charge from defensive tackle. Junior Zak Hanson (6'2", 215), along with McClure and Mallory, rotates in the defensive line. Allen heads up the secondary.   

Mason Bulldogs
League: CAAC Red
Coach: Jerry VanHavel
2014 Record: 8-4, 3-2 3rd
Players lost: Stone Miller (OL/DL), Aaron Rustem (OL), Jake Stid (LB), Jake Scavarda (FB/LB), Kolby Thompson (WR/DB)
Players returning: Jarrett VanHaven (QB), Hunter Holbrook (RB/LB), Nick Vondra (TE/DB), Sam Benson (OT/DT), Dan Kennihan (C/DT), Riley Smith (TE/LB), Cameron Nickerson (LB/TE)
Outlook: The Bulldogs qualified for the playoffs for the sixth time in the past seven years last fall and went on a memorable run, before falling to eventual state champion  St.Mary’s Preparatory in the regional final. The Bulldogs return a number of key players this season, led by versatile quarterback Jarrett VanHavel (6'1", 185 pounds), all-conference running back Hunter Holbrook, and all-conference tight end/defensive back Nick Vondra. Mason also returns senior lineman Sam Benson, who is a force on both sides of the ball.    

Waverly Warriors
League: CAAC Red
Coach: Anthony Walker
2014 Record: 3-6, 1-4 5th
Players lost: Josh Mullin (OL), Austin Edwards (TE/DE), Deonte Braxton (OL/DL)
Players returning: Jaden Sutton (RB), DaVarie Halliburton (DB), Tyler Mojet (FB/WR), Alex Owens (DE), Tayveon Henry (S), Tommy Herring (QB)
Outlook: The Warriors have one of the most exciting backs in mid Michigan in junior Jaden Sutton (5'9", 165 pounds). Sutton is quick, smart, and elusive and rushed for 950 yards and 10 touchdowns as a sophomore. DaVarie Halliburton (6'1", 170) has outstanding quickness and is a returning all-conference defensive back. Senior Tyler Mojet (5'8", 178) is a versatile player who can play fullback or wide receiver. Developing quality line play will be key for Waverly.  

Lansing Catholic Cougars
League: CAAC White
Coach: Jim Ahern
2014 Record: 13-1, 5-0 1st
Players lost: Jack Peters (WR), Zac Baker (WR/DB), Caleb Mayers (OL), Drew Pence (OL), Ian Gorgenson (OL), Ben Respecki (DL), Moses Kone (LB), Matt Fata (DB), Conner Rucinski (DB)
Players returning: Tony Poljan (QB), Tony Palmer (WR/RB), Joel Collinson (DL), Peter Galer (FB/LB), Ben Rashid (SB/LB), Willoughby Urguhart (OT/DE), Robert Lundberg (LB/FB), Liam Lamke (OL), Alex Bott (OT), Tino Laurich (G/DT), Mitch McInnis (TE/SS), David Hart (DE)
Outlook: The Cougars were one of the state’s premier teams last year, as they reeled off 13 straight wins before falling to Grand Rapids West Catholic in the Division 5 state title game. The Cougars have all the pieces in place for another monster season, with senior all-state quarterback Tony Poljan (6'7", 235 pounds), along with dynamic running back/receiver Tony Palmer. The offensive line is anchored by Liam Lamke (6'6", 255). The Cougars also have a solid defense, led by all-conference defensive lineman Joel Collinson and linebackers Peter Galer (6'0", 210), Ben Rashid (5'11", 190), and Robert Lundberg (6'0", 210).  

Eaton Rapids Greyhounds
League: CAAC White
Coach: Mike Smith
2014 Record: 8-4, 3-2 3rd
Players lost: Jared McDaniel (QB), James Cruz (WR), Wyatt Satterelli (DL), Chris Fillwok (LB), Jaedin Sklapski (LB), Blaine Milheim (DB)
Players returning: Lane McVicker (RB/SS), Andrew Wick (OL/DE), Jarod Bush (OL/DT), Clayton Higelmire (C/DL), Taylor Oberlin-Scott (RB/DE), Triston Warner (FB/DT), Kyle Dyer (OT/DE), Konner Dyer (OL/DL)
Outlook: It was another memorable year for the Greyhounds, who made the playoffs for the second-straight season before falling to Edwardsburg in the regional final. Eaton Rapids returns a number of key players, led by all-conference running back Lane McVicker (5'10", 160 pounds). The Greyhounds will also be strong in the trenches, thanks to the return of senior all-conference linemen Andrew Wick (6'2", 220), Jarod Bush (6'3", 315), and Clayton Higelmire (6'0", 230).  

Williamston Hornets
League: CAAC White
Coach: Steve Kersten
2014 Record: 7-3, 4-1 2nd
Players lost: Chaz Moore (QB), Hayden Toone (RB), Stone Chase (WR), Jared Fleming (DL), Meshach Tompkins (DL), John McCann (LB), Garrett Nolan (LB), Seth Kirby (DB), Brandyn Perkins (DB)
Players returning: Jason Hull (OL), Jacob Christie (LB), Blair Johnson (WR/CB), Maddox Maki (OL), Cole Berg (QB/LB), Montana Reagan (SB/SS), Robbie Grooms (G/DT)
Outlook: The Hornets qualified for the playoffs for a third consecutive year last fall but have some major rebuilding to do, with the loss of several key players. On offense, the Hornets will fashion what should be a solid offensive line around returning all-conference tackle Jason Hll (5'11", 240 pounds) and seniors Maddox Maki (6'3", 260) and Robbie Grooms (6'5", 260). Junior Cole Berg (6'2", 190) looks to take over at quarterback, while senior Montana Reagan is a playmaker at slot back. Senior linebacker Jacob Christie heads up what should develop into a solid defense.

Charlotte Orioles
League: Interstate 8
Coach: Jeff Finney
2014 Record: 4-5, 4-3
Players lost: Brandon Johnson (LB), Matt Donley (DB), Tyler Davis (SB/CB)
Players returning: Sy Barrett (WR/K), Mikey Demello (DL), Justin Anderson (RB/SS), Tyler Bandy (WR), Tony Worden (OL), Blake Clevenger (WR/FS), Collin Garn (QB), Mason Penix (OT/DT), Bryce Johnson (SB/LB), Greg Kayne (RB/LB), CJ Cuff (OL/NG), Andrew Burdick (DT)
Outlook: The Orioles turned in a strong showing in the debut season of the Interstate 8. Charlotte returns plenty of size and experience to build off last year’s showing. Senior Collin Garn (6'0", 185 pounds) looks to start at quarterback, while junior Sy Barrett (6'1", 170) is an all-conference wide receiver. Tyler Bandy (6'0", 180) is another all-conference receiver. Gigantic tackle Mason Penix (6'8", 330) anchors the offensive line that includes CJ Cuff (5'8", 275). Charlotte has a solid defense, as well, led by senior defensive lineman Mikey Demello (5'9", 225), a returning all-conference player. Seniors Justin Anderson and Blake Clevenger are a pair of all-conference defensive backs. Andrew Burdick (5'11", 275) returns up front, as well, along with senior linebackers Bryce Johnson and Greg Kayne.