COACH: Thad Lear (16th year, 64-88 record).
LAST YEAR: 8-3, 5-0 Class 3A Northern League. Lost 33-8 to Eagle Valley in first round of playoffs.
RETURNING STARTERS: Michael Broz (Sr., QB/FS, 6-foot-1, 185 pounds); Ryan Cawthra (Sr., OL, 6-2, 220); Austin King (Sr., DT/OL, 6-1, 255); Xavier Lindburg (Sr. RB/LB, 5-10, 180); Trystan Montano (Jr., OL, 5-10, 255).
OTHERS TO WATCH: Sam Butts (Sr. LB, 6-1, 190); Jordan DeFalco (Jr., LB, 5-10, 175); Mitchell Held (Sr., RB/DB, 6-0, 170); Tyler John (Sr., SE/DB, 6-1, 185); Westlyn Johnston (Sr., OL, 5-10, 185); Joe Lopez (Sr., DL/FB, 6-1, 270); Sam Olson (Jr., TE/LB, 6-2, 190); Dalton Spitale (Sr., TE/OLB, 6-4, 185).
COLLEGE PROSPECTS: Broz, King, Lopez.
MUST-SEE GAME: Oct. 18 at Holy Family.
STRENGTHS: Lear's quality group -- players who play a majority of the snaps -- jumped up from about 15 players last year to about 35 this year, he said, meaning athletes like King, Butts and DeFalco can focus on defense only. Lopez could be a tough cookie this year for opposing offensive lines, and either Lindburg and Held can bank on a 1,000-yard rushing season.
WEAKNESSES: While Broz should be a dynamic quarterback, the receiving corps he's throwing to might be a little raw, with no returners in those skill spots. The Warriors might be able to utilize Lindburg out of the backfield, but players like John, Olson, and Spitale better be prepared to make some catches.
Aug. 30 -- at Elizabeth, 7 p.m.
Sept. 6 -- PUEBLO EAST, 7 p.m.
Sept. 13 -- at Berthoud, 7 p.m.
Sept. 20 -- ROOSEVELT, 7 p.m.
Sept. 27 -- at Silver Creek, Everly Montgomery Stadium, 7 p.m.
Oct. 4 -- ERIE*, 7 p.m.
Oct. 11 -- at Centaurus*, Warrior Stadium (CHS), 7 p.m.
Oct. 18 -- at Holy Family*, 7 p.m.
Oct. 25 -- DENVER NORTH*, 7 p.m.
Nov. 1 -- THOMAS JEFFERSON*, 7 p.m.
Note: Home games upper case and at Frederick High School. Asterisk indicates 3A Northern League game.
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