Adversity multiplies for Chiefs



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Wed. October 7, 2009 | Joey Knight | Email

The most beleaguered coach in Hillsborough County could use a little luck Friday, something to neutralize Alonso's pass-happy offense and bring a glimmer of hope to his winless program.

"We need something good to happen," Chamberlain's Joe Severino said. "A good rainstorm and swirling wind."

The thought of nature shutting down the Ravens' air attack evokes a chuckle from Severino, who has had little else to laugh about lately. Since being hired as Chiefs coach when John Colbert abruptly quit after spring practice, Severino has endured a deluge of misfortune.

"It's just one thing after another," he said.

Graduation, transfers, injuries and defections have battered the Chiefs, outscored 172-22 in five games. The loss of 24 seniors from last season's 11-2 team, combined with the offseason departures of Division I prospects Cary White (to Sickles), James Wilder Jr. (to Plant) and Eric Hammond (to Wharton), already had the Chiefs staring at a major rebuilding project.

Then things got worse. The day before Chamberlain's preseason game at Jefferson, Severino learned defensive tackle Jarvis Henderson -- perhaps the team's lone remaining Division I prospect -- was moving to Bloomingdale for undisclosed family reasons.

What's more, injuries to quarterbacks Travis Hanchett (foot) and Thadeus Baxley (hamstring) forced Severino to use running back Blake Bell behind center in last week's 35-6 loss to Plant City.

"A couple quit today," said Severino, who expects to suit up roughly 35 players Friday. "What are you going to do? You've got to keep coaching them. ... We're holding it together." 



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