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Around the county in 30 days
A daily spring preview of every football program in Pinellas County
Coach: Tom Bostic (28th season, 158-128)
Last season: 5-5
District: Class 5A, District 8
Key losses: OL/DL Michael Barber, FB A.J. Eastman, LB/RB Jeremiah George, OL/DL Michael Green, DL Timothy Paar, RB Mario Riley
Who’s back: WR/DB Heath Anderson, QB Ryan Hagen, OL Sean McGee, RB/DB Bennie Niles, C Justin Seelig
What’s new: The biggest question for the Tornadoes this spring is how to replace linebacker Jeremiah George, the Times’ 2009 Pinellas County defensive player of the year. Brandon Dillard and John Stima both return at linebacker. Clearwater also got a boost with the addition of Dylan Rubino, a transfer from Largo. On the offensive side, the passing game is set with Hagen back at quarterback. He’ll have plenty of targets, including Niles and Anderson. Bostic wants balance, but he might have to go to the air more early on because of the lack of experience in the ground game. Clearwater lost its top three leading rushers from last season. Bostic is trying to fill that void with Rubino and Michael Jerrido, who moves up from junior varsity. Niles also will be used at running back to take advantage of his speed. The offensive line will be anchored by McGee and Seelig.
Audible: “We have a decent amount of guys out for football and they’ve put in the time in the weight room. They’re all excited to get started.” — Bostic
Did you know? Because they belong in different classifications, Clearwater and Largo had to scrap their rivalry in the regular season. But the schools are making up for it by playing each other in preseason games in the spring and fall. Both will be held at Largo.
Spring game: May 28 at Largo, 6:30 p.m.
Sept. 3 vs. Seminole
Sept. 10 at Osceola
Sept. 16 at Northeast
Sept. 24 vs. East Lake
Oct. 1 vs. Dixie Hollins
Oct. 8 at Countryside
Oct. 15 at Pinellas Park
Oct. 22 at Dunedin
Nov. 5 vs. Palm Harbor University
Nov. 12 vs. Tarpon Springs