| August 25, 2013 | Comments (0)


Team Capsules compiled by Dan Stickradt. Email or follow on twitter NOSs.FootballLogo-2@LocalSportsFans

School: Clio

Nickname: Mustangs

Coach: Nate Taylor, fourth season.

Assistant Coaches: Craig Heely, Joe Beckwith, Tim Hence.

2012 record: 0-9, 0-8 FML (ninth).

Postseason Appearances: 1, 1994.

Offense: Hybrid.

Defense: 3-4.

Players lost: Aaron Huff, Chris Lanyi.

Key players returning: Tyler Eible, sr. OT (6-3, 260); Luke Weslowski, sr. RB-CB (5-9, 170); Zach Pakacs, jr. WR-CB (5-11, 165).

Key Newcomers: Riggs Robinson, jr. RB (5-8, 170); Jimmy Ziobro, jr. QB (6-4, 230); Jimmy Kircher, sr. DE (6-0, 185).

Coach’s comment: “The hardest part is trying to get these guys to believe that they can win. Our numbers are the biggest they have been here in many years. It’s also the hardest working group I’ve had since I’ve been here — by far.”


School: Fenton

Nickname: Tigers

Coach: Jeff Setzke, 21st season (106-65).

Assistant Coaches: Ron Eltringham, Brian Eltringham, Ryan Coffman, Randy Hoover, Ken Brown.

2012 record: 9-2, 7-1 FML (tied-first).

Postseason Appearances: 12, 1984, 1985, 1987, 1989, 1993, 1999, 2000, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012.

Offense: Spread Option-No Huddle

Defense: 40 Front

Players lost: Cody Hovevar, Nick Chappell, Joe Diller, Jacob Keesee, Mitch Shegos, Damon Thomas, Alex Okepein, Brennam Clarke.

Key players returning: Trent Grimes, sr. SL; Scott Lukas, sr. WR-DB; Luke Idoni, sr. C-DE; Tyler Hudson, sr. DT; McKay Hamilton, sr. FS; Johvi Reynolds, sr. LB; Mac Hamilton, sr. SE; John Smith, sr. OG-DT

Key Newcomers: James Claborn, sr. QB.

Notes: The Tigers are coming off five straight postseason berths and are primed to make another run at the playoffs. Fenton has proven in recent years that they are one of the top teams in the FML and are expected to contend again this season.



School: Flint Kearsley

Nickname: Hornets

Coach: Rod Schuch, fourth season.

Assistant Coaches: Russ Beagle, Rich Bennett, Paul Carpenter, Ryan Mansfield

2012 record: 3-6, 2-6 FML (tied-sixth).

Postseason Appearances:: 5, 1988, 1990, 1995, 1996, 1998

Players lost: Nate Kamert, Richard Conrad, Lance Mucha, Vinnie Brandt, Zack Link, Trevor Oaks, Alex Schmitter, Caleb Pyscher, Matt Romono, Brett Morin

Key players returning: Matt Weine, sr. RB-P; Aaron Jones III, sr. OT; Anthony McMasters, sr. CB; Hayden Prine, sr. SE; Cedric Moten, jr. WR.

Notes: The Hornets graduated most of its size and must develop new lineman to aid the return of several skilled athletes. If the bigmen in the trenches develop, then Kearsley could surprise in a wide-open FML. The Hornets must also learn how to win, as the program has not one more than five games in a season since 1998 (10-1).



School: Holly

Nickname: Bronchos

Coach: Ryan Culloty, sixth season (60-41 career record).

2012 record:  5-4, 4-4 FML (fifth).

Assistant Coaches: Don Aleman, Justin Foco, Chris Hare, Matt Kessler, Dallas Lesperance, Greg Maynard, Heath Neubecker, Sam Quintanilla, Eric Peterson

Postseason Appearances: 3, 2006, 2010, 2011.

Offense: Spread

Defense: 31-Multiple

Key players lost: Johnny Williams (three-time all-conference QB), Evin Papuga, Kyle Vandel, Jake Schuermann, Kyle McCarty, Andrew Giles, Zach Diehl, Josh Sayles.

Players returning: Jake Zorn, jr. QB-DB (6-3, 190; Andrew Scott, sr. WR (6-1, 190); Ben Kopopitski, sr. OL (5-11, 210); Tom O’Connor, sr. OL-RB (5-11, 220); Jose Martinez, sr. OL (5-10, 220); Kyle Pepper, sr. LB-RB (5-9, 165); Tyler Flores, sr. DB (5-10, 165); Adam Tooley, soph. DL (5-11, 175); Avery Bishop, jr. DT (6-0, 200).

Coach’s comment: “We are a lot like most of the teams in our league. We lost several two-and three-year starters to graduation and have some holes to fill. It all goes down to the younger guys stepping up and filling those holes and the seniors providing great leadership. If we get both of those, then we will be competitive.”



School: Lapeer East

Nickname: Eagles

Coach: Jake Weingartz, sixth season (27-21).

Assistant Coaches: Brian Thomas, Bryan Ludlow, Austin Green, Larry Perry, Joe Schoeyman.

2012 record: 3-6, 2-6 FML (tied-sixth).

Postseason Appearances: 5, 1993, 2002, 2004, 2010, 2011.

Offense: Gap Scheme, Multiple.

Defense: Multiple.

Players lost: Joe Perry, Austin Greenleaf, Gibson Finch, Nate Catalano, Jake Perry, Matt Frank.

Key players returning: Kyle Rachwal, sr. LB-TE (6-3, 215); Anthony Hebert, jr. DT-OT (6-5, 300); Dan Perry, soph. OL-DT (6-2, 260); Ben Muir, sr. RB; Travis Mersino, sr. RB-DB (5-10, 190); Trevor Fisher, jr. WR-DB (5-8, 170).

Key Newcomers: Eli Hunt, soph. QB-DB (5-10, 160); Connor Schulte, jr. LB (5-9, 180).

Coach’s comment: “We had 12 sophomores and a freshman on varsity last season, so we were really young. I think with a year experience and the fact that we have most of our team back, we should be a lot better than we were last season.”


School: Lapeer West

Nickname: Panthers

Coach: Mike Smith, 16th season (103-52)

2012 record: 6-4, 6-2 FML (third).

Postseason Appearances: 14, 1993, 1995, 1996, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012.

Players lost: Michael Ledington, Cody Perkins, Zeshawn Jones-Parker, Brandon Welling.

Key players returning: Kevin Essenmacher, sr. OL-LB; Hunter Sharrard, sr. QB; Brenden Stocker, sr. DB-FB; Mark Cox, sr. LB-WR; Nick Harris, sr. DL; Noah Raymond, sr. DE-LB; Matt Place, sr. DB-WR; Malik Deverell, sr. RB.

Notes: This is the last year of Lapeer West football, as the Panthers will be merged into Lapeer West and become Lapeer High for the first time since 1976-77. West has five returning starters back on offense and six on defense, but must replace some key skilled athletes if the Panthers are to stay in the hunt in their final season in the FML.


School: Linden

Nickname: Eagles

Coach: Dennis Hopkins (26th season, 108-34) and Nick Douglass (first season), co-coaches.

Assistant Coaches: Mike Gates, Kyle Hopkins, Thad Guyzik, Max Powell, Tyler Keeble

2012 record: 9-2, 7-1 FML (tied-first).

Postseason Appearances: 15, 1995, 1996, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012.

Offense: Spread

Defense: 3-4

Players lost: Ed Walterhouse, Travis Hull, Taylor Anderson, Nick Carlson, Shaye Brown, Mitch Juhl, Cody Grandy, Ben Armstrong, Matt Weirenga, Patrick Ryan, Mitch Ryan, Joey Williams, Blake North, Cody Grandy, Travis Hull, Connor O’Connell, Aaron Kersten, Mason Belbot.

Key players returning: Marshael Ryan, jr. TE-WR (6-2, 205); Austin McNeil, jr. OG (6-0, 185); Kyle Korman, jr. DE (6-4, 215); Cameron Cook, sr. P (6-2, 175).

Key Newcomers: Garrett Beaudry, sr. WR-OLB (6-0, 180); Charlie Gergel, sr. OG-LB (6-0, 185); Nick Sioui, sr. OG-NG (6-0, 190); Ian Webb, sr. OG-LB (5-11, 185); Austin Buerkel, jr. WR-DB (6-1, 175); Mike Gold, jr. WR-DB (6-3, 175); Zack Kentish, jr. WR-DB (5-10, 170) Andrew Kost, jr. C-DE (6-0, 190); Jake Marshall, jr. WR-DB (6-1, 170); Gage Smith, jr. QB-SE (6-0, 175); Andy Roberts, jr. OT-LB (6-1, 190); Kevin Bates, soph. RB-P (5-10, 165); Noah Sargent, soph. QB-SE (6-0, 170).

Notes: Linden has been a factor in the FML on a regular basis for the past 15 years. The Eagles suffered mass amounts of starters to graduation, leaving the door open for new opportunity. The Eagles could stroll through a rebuilding year or just simply reload. Time will tell.


School: Ortonville Brandon

Nickname: Blackhawks

Coach: Tim Pizzala, fifth season.

Assistant Coaches: Joel Dohm, Scott Sawyer, David Wyatt, Brian Blausey, Anthony Higbon, Jason Miller, Bryan Blausey.

2012 record: 1-8, 1-7 FML (eighth).

Postseason Appearances: 4, 2011, 2000, 1997, 1996

Offense: Spread

Defense: 4-3.

Players lost: Larry Bland, Nick Wummell, Derek Klanke, Blake Nivelt, Blake Rehan,

Key players returning: Nick Keller, sr. QB (6-0, 170); Matt Sears, sr. RB (5-8, 180); Shane Arnold, jr. C (5-11, 205); Ian Harrington, sr. LT (6-2, 210); Dominik Delbuco, sr. OG (5-9, 200); Jake Sutherland, jr. WR (6-4, 215); Ryan Eldon, sr. LB (6-1, 180); John Ware, sr. LB (6-0, 180); Matt Howlett, sr. DB (5-9, 170); Brad Howlett, sr. DB (5-9, 170); Chase Cochran, sr. CB; Trevor Bourdreau, sr. CB (6-0, 170); Andrew Derry, sr. DB.

Coach’s comment: “We will be better than last season. Last year we only had a couple of returning starters and a roster mostly of first-year varsity players. Now we have a big senior class and these guys are hungry. They want to get back the playoffs.


School: Swartz Creek

Nickname: Dragons

Coach: Brad Brown

2012 record: 7-3, 6-2 FML (tied-third).

Postseason Appearances: 1, 2012.

Players lost: Travis Campbell, Jaylen Schoefield, Max Cummings, Clay Black, Devin Mosholder, James Richards,

Key players returning: Kevin Weiler, sr. OL-DL; Grant Yaklin, sr. OL-LB; Jacob Littles, sr. WR.

Key newcomers: Brett Pero, soph. DE.

Notes: The Dragons made the playoffs for the first time in 2012, but must replace most of its starting lineup due to graduation.


Team Capsules compiled by Dan Stickradt. Email or follow on twitter @LocalSportsFans

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