Led by Division I prospects Malik Johns and Nate Craig, Pasco could have a dozen athletes vying for playing time at running back or receiver and carrying on the Pirates’ tradition of standout skill players. • But one early story in spring is Pasco’s beefier, stronger offensive line that is looking to open holes against Bushnell South Sumter and Hernando in a tough district this fall.
Three projected starters weigh at least 260 pounds, including new left tackle Jamal Mention. The Hernando transfer was listed at 6-foot-4, 295 pounds as a freshman last fall but is closer to 6-6, 310.
“He’s a monster,” Johns said.
Pasco’s line also got a boost with the return of 6-foot-3, 260-pound junior Andrew Ivie — younger brother of UF freshman Joey Ivie — from a knee injury.
Perhaps the most interesting development comes with converted tight ends Bowman Archibald and RJ Scaife.
The 6-5, 220-pound Archibald battled for the starting quarterback job last year as a sophomore, but coaches moved him to tight end to take advantage of a 4.6-second 40-yard dash time.
Tight end also gives Scaife, a 6-6, 255-pound senior, the chance to use his size, strength, speed and 4.7-second 40 time in a variety of packages.
“He played tackle, so he can block,” coach Tom McHugh said. “He’s pretty athletic, and he can catch.”
Number of the day: 2,000 yards
That’s the goal Anclote’s linemen have set for RB Willie Barrett, according to Sharks coach Matt Wicks. The Division I prospect led Pasco County with a school-record 1,405 yards as a junior, often plowing through holes that didn’t exist. Ridgewood’s Byronell Arline set the county rushing record of 2,188 yards in 2007.
By the numbers: Mitchell
4,604 Rushing yards by the Mustangs in two seasons in coach Scott Schmitz’s second stint
3,295 Rushing yards by brothers Ricky and Christian Trinidad in the past four seasons. Christian will be a senior this fall, while Ricky plays at Nebraska-Kearney
97 Tackles by LB Beau Beck as a junior — second on the team
10 Passes broken up by DB Josh Lamb, ranked among the county’s leaders
4 Games won in a row by Mitchell to open last fall
Weeki Wachee coach Mark Lee said Thursday was “crazy,” and with good reason. His star offensive lineman, Marcus Applefield, picked up offers from USF, Vanderbilt and FIU. Vandy was the first SEC offer for Applefield, a 6-foot-7, 275-pound senior who also holds offers from Rutgers, Marshall, UMass and UCF.
Tweets of the day
After starting practice later than most schools to make up for a later spring game, Wiregrass Ranch seemed excited to begin full-contact practices Thursday.
Wiregrass junior DB Jaye Miner
@jayeminerbulls: “Hit Day Click Clack @WRHSFootball”
@WRHSFootball: “2 words: Hit Day”
Photo: Pasco's RJ Scaife