The Grassfield Grizzlies found themselves in the Division 6 playoffs once again last year. It’s been five years since the founding of the school and the start of the program. In the first year, Grassfield failed to win a game. In every year since, they’ve been in the playoffs.
Portsmouth Christian football is a relatively new program. They get a new start this fall under new Head Coach Marcus Cutler. The Patriots were in the VISAA Division 3 playoffs just two years ago, and they’re looking to get back there quickly.
Hampton Crabbers Coach Mike Smith has been around the block a few times. He’s coached the Crabbers for 40 years. With that comes an approach that some might call “old school” and others would call “cynical”, Smith has a traditional approach to preparing for the season. His team is expected to win. That being said, he’s not offering up any bulletin board material for his opponents.
Warwick Running Back Cardon Johnson continues to be a hot commodity for colleges recruiting The 757. He hasn’t quite broken through and gotten that big Division I offer yet, but Johnson added a new offer from Division I FBS start up Charlotte. The 49ers are agressively diving into the local market of recruits.
For the Maury Commodores, 2011 was a fresh start. It was the first year of the Chris Fraser era as a head coach, and there were growing pains to go along with that. Coach Fraser expected a few bumps along the way. He also expects steadier ride for 2012.
The Salem SunDevils had quite a run in 2011. The newly minted Beach District Champions were a two-point conversion away from topping the eventual Division 6 State Champion Oscar Smith Tigers in the Eastern Region Final last November. You can bet that the returners still feel the sting of that close loss, and use it for motivation to be even better in 2012.
By most accounts, 2011 was a year of resurgence for the Nansemond River Warriors. They practically alternated wins and losses last year, finishing the season with an upset over crosstown rival Lakeland, who was headed to the playoffs for the first time as Group AAA school. NRHS had their best record since 2002, and that gives them hopes for this year.
Booker T. Washington has almost always had speed to burn. This year is no exception. While the 2012 Bookers might be young and inexperienced, they’re hoping that speed will make the difference.
Tallwood coach John Kepple had last year to work the kinks out. This year, he gets to see how the program progresses with the kids. There are a lot of key players returning. Those guys are another year older, and with another year in Kepple’s system, they should be ready to thrive.
King’s Fork Wide Receiver Davon Grayson has certainly impressed this summer. He came out of “virtually nowhere” to a point where he was making camp appearances, running 4.4 forties and grabbing the attention of college coaches around the Mid-Atlantic.