Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Northeast 10 2011 Preview
American International Yellow Jackets
2010 Record: 6-4
After a bumpy start to the season, AIC finished off strong by winning 5 of their last 6 games last fall, and they averaged 41.4 points per game in those 5 wins. The Jackets are starting over at QB, after they lose Rob Parent and his 25 TDs passing. Mike Mayo returns as the starting RB, but only rushed for 480 yards and 3 scores, and he shared time with Terrel Williams and Courtney Stephenson, while converted DB Bryan Fitzgerald pushed for time as well. Andre Samuels was good for 10 TDs last fall, and returns to lead the receivers. Markell Rice will be the new defensive leader, as he collected 66 tackles after converting to defense from WR. AIC does lose their two top tacklers from last season. Justin Tervo led the Jackets in both sacks and TFLs (8) last fall, and Rice led the team by defending 7 passes last season.
Season Opener: 9/3 @ CW Post
2010 Record: 6-5
The Hounds were on the right path, and then they stumbled out of contention by dropping their final 3 games last season. Andrew Kupec, the leagues leading passer, has moved on, leaving a huge hole at QB. Uly Gibson moves to the top spot at RB after the loss of Herb Woodard, who finished 3rd in the league in rushing last fall. Gibson rushed for only 384 as the primary backup. The top 3 receivers from last fall, including David Canney (1st in the NE10, 86-1036-5) are gone. The defense is thin, as the Hounds return nobody from the top 25 tacklers in the conference, and they lacked pressure up front. Dan Conrad returns after defending 6 passes in the secondary. Play makers are seriously lacking. 6 wins may be asking a lot this fall.
Season Opener: 9/3 Bowie State
2010 Record: 5-4
The Falcons played a short schedule last fall, and had to win 4 straight to close out the season to get over .500. The Falcons Also lose their starting QB, Bryant Johnson, and are looking to rebuild. Bobby Tarr returns after rushing for 590 yards and 3 scores last fall. He needs to carry more of the load, as he averaged over 6 yards per carry last season. The Falcons lose their top 3 receivers, so the passing game could be a nightmare. Steve Hopkins returns after collecting 68 tackles last fall, but the Falcons lose their top two tacklers. More pressure is needed up front, but that seems to be a common theme in this conference. Don Hopkins finished 5th in the nation with 6 picks last fall.
Season Opener: 9/2 Maritime (NY)
2010 Record: 4-6
The Warriors had serious struggles with consistency on both sides of the football, and it was their impending doom. James Suozzo returns at QB, giving the Warriors an edge in a league where there was so much turnover. Suozzo was they poster child for consistency issues at times, as he passed for 17 scores but was also picked 13 times in 10 games. The Warriors need increased output from RB Anthony Smalls, who rushed for 439 yards and 7 scores. Isaiah Voegeli will be the top receiver after finishing 4th in the league with 803 yards receiving last fall. Omari Mobley moves into the second WR spot. LB Shawn Loiseau finished 2nd nationally with 133 tackles, averaging 13.3 per game. His return is huge. Tony Johnson will return to apply pressure up front after recording 7 total sacks last fall to lead the league. Johnson recorded 14.5 TFLs last season, which also led the league and was good for 28th nationally. Ryan McCarthy and Artis Holt will try to nail down the deficiencies in the pass defense, as they combined for 19 passes defended in 2010. They finished 1 and 2 in the league. Justin Marsan led the team with 3 picks, and also returns.
Season Opener: 9/3 WPI
New Haven Chargers
2010 Season: 8-2
The Chargers are back, and after a brief period of time where they dropped football, they appear to be crawling back onto the landscape. Ryan Osieski returns at QB, and he passed for 1861 yards and 16 TDs last fall. HE could be a major breakout player as a senior this fall. Victor Jones missed a game at RB, but still rushed for 1021 yards and 11 scores, and led the conference with a 113.44 yard average per game, good for 18th nationally. The top two receivers in Demetrius Washington-Elli and Sharieff Hall both return. Charlie Hatchett returns after leading the team with 83 tackles last fall at LB, and DB Desmond Anderson returns as the leading tackler in the secondary with 53. LB Robert Hill also returns at LB after collecting 9 TFLs last season. JD Chalifoux led the team with 6 passes defended, and also returns. Anderson led the league with 7 picks last fall. All of this returning strength makes the Chargers the team to beat in the Northeast 10.
Season Opener: 9/3 West Chester
2010 Record: 0-9
Abysmal. That's the only word that can describe the train wreck that was 2010 for the Setters. The Setters gave up 46.4 points per game last fall, and their average margin of loss was 30.4 points per game. It gets no worse than that. Jordan Raynor returns as the leading candidate to start at QB, but he did absolutely nothing as a freshman. The Setters lost their only weapon in Jason Washington at RB, and they have no depth there. They also lose Eric Ortega, their leading receiver. David Lopez returns after racking up 79 tackles at DB last fall, but they lost Patrick Finnigan, who was their one source of pressure up front. The secondary was a black hole last fall, and it looks no better now.
Season Opener: 9/1 @ East Stroudsburg
St. Anselm Hawks
2010 Record: 2-8
The Hawks were not the worst disaster in the conference, but they were certainly a disaster. They allowed 41.5 points per game, and 5 of their final 6 games. Improvement starts with junior QB Mike Pierce, who tossed 15 TDs, but also tossed 12 picks. The Hawks need to find a RB to support the passing game, or else they will continue to spin their wheels, and Pierce will continue to be forced into mistakes by overloading him. He will also have to find new receivers, as the top two have departed. Chris Bent and Shane O'Donnell return at LB to anchor the defense, but they have a ton of work to do to keep people from scoring at will. O'Donnell did collect 9 TFLs last fall. The Hawks were fairly young in the secondary last fall, so more experience will definitely help.Still a ton of work to do here.
Season Opener: 9/3 Kutztown
Southern Connecticut State Owls
2010 Record: 6-4
The Owls finished strong by winning their final 3 games in 2010 after a very rough start to the season. Kevin Lynch may be the best returning QB in the league after he passed for 2468 yards and 24 TDs last fall. Rashaad Slowley returns as the primary back after rushing for 871 yards and 10 TDs last fall, and the job is all his after sharing time last fall. Willie Epps and Andre Privott return as the top 2 receivers after combining for 71 receptions last fall. Epps is especially dangerous up field, after averaging nearly 27 yards per reception last fall. LB Sam Johnson returns at LB after recording 76 tackles last season, but he needs some play making support around him. Kamal Magaresh returns in the secondary after defending 7 passes last fall, but they lose play making machine Richard Kirkland from the secondary. SCSU could push New Haven and Merrimack for league supremacy this fall, but the opener is a meat grinder.
Season Opener: 9/3 @ Central Connecticut State
2010 Record: 5-5
The Hawks were just 5 points away from a 7 win season last fall, so they have yet to get over the hump to being a consistent player in this conference. They have issues at QB and RB this fall, as they have voids at both spots. Whomever wins the QB job will have a quality wide out to get the ball to in junior John Gomes, who had 50 receptions last fall. Junior LB Jonathon Poth finished 15th in the nation last fall with 99 tackles, and he will lead the defense, which was inconsistent last season. Jareed Gaines finished second in the conference with 14.5 TFLs last season. DB Stephan Neville returns after having defended 9 passes in 2010. The defense may have to carry a heavy burden as the offense tries to put themselves together.
Season Opener: 9/2 Curry