MORE from our HomeTeam writers.
Numerous games, practices and 7-on-7s. Six weeks of debate. Two fistfights. One countdown of the top 100 football players in Tampa Bay. We'll be rolling out 10 players a day for two weeks.
2011 stats:102 tackles, three sacks, four TDs as a fullback
The breakdown:The Jesuit senior linebacker is undersized at 5-11, 210 pounds, but he brings da noise and da funk when laying a tackle on opposing ballcarriers. We saw the Elon commitment knock off two helmets last year, and we expect more heads to roll in 2012.
2011 stats:12 catches, 156 yards, one touchdown
The breakdown:The senior tight end (6-3, 220) is an excellent blocker and a perfect fit for Countryside’s pound-it-first mentality. But expect more receptions this season, as Sattinger’s soft hands become a Cougars weapon.
2011 stats:Roughly 100 tackles, an interception and two touchdown catches
The breakdown:The Clearwater Central Catholic LB/TE’s highlight video is filled with relentless pursuit, crashing hits and big plays. The Osceola transfer will play receiver and fullback this season, but his true value will come on defense, where he possesses ferocity and a knack for being in the right places at the right time.
2011 stats:714 yards rushing, 6.8 yards a carry, 10 TDs; 47 tackles, four sacks
The breakdown:The Hernando junior is one of the true unsung gems in Tampa Bay. At 6-1, 205, he averaged almost 7 yards a carry and is a ferocious hitter at linebacker.
2011 stats:39 tackles, 261 yards rushing, six TDs
The breakdown:The senior FB/LB is a 6-foot, 230-pound short-yardage banger (13 TDs the past two seasons), but has added speed in the offseason and will also excel as the big hitter in the middle of Countryside defense.
2011 stats:22 catches, 315 yards, 4 TDs; 31 tackles, 3 INTs
The breakdown:The recent Florida Atlantic commitment is a 5-11, 160-pound speedster who will get more touches in 2012. We see this Jesuit senior athlete doubling his scoring output from a year ago, and then some.
2011 stats:Roughly 100 tackles
The breakdown:The senior LB/RB is a disruptive 6-1, 215-pound middle linebacker who made a name for himself last year with some bone-crushing hits. He’s too good to come off the field for Palm Harbor University.
2011 stats:783 yards, 11 TDs, 7 yards a carry
The breakdown:Ruiz will share carries with Michael Duclos, but improved size and strength may mean a bigger piece of the pie for 5-foot-10, 190-pound Robinson senior.
2011 stats:Nearly 1,000 total yards from scrimmage, seven TDs
The breakdown:Boca Ciega senior RB/CB (5-10, 170) is a big-time breakout candidate for 2012. He looked fabulous in a spring scrimmage at Countryside, and was a top 7-on-7 and combine performer in the offseason. Could emerge as an all-county performer.
2011 stats:Started all 10 games
The breakdown:The Springstead senior OT is brainy enough to earn offers from schools like Harvard, but he lost 50 pounds in the offseason off his now 6-7, 270-pound frame in order to gain speed and strength in his quest for a BCS offer.