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Spring football capsule: Northside Christian

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Wed. May 19, 2010 | Bob Putnam | Email

Around the county in 30 days

A daily spring preview of every football program in Pinellas County

Northside Christian

Coach: Andre Dobson (third season, 9-12)

Last season: 8-3 (beat Carrollwood Day 47-10 in bowl game)

District: Independent

Key losses: RB/KR Chris Culbreth, WR/FS Will Scott, OL/DL Austin Sheldon, TE Andrew Speake

Who’s back: TE Zach Fossen, RB/CB Lucio Ojeda, RB/LB Jeremy Smith, WR/DB Cody Swain, OL/DL Patrick Tomlin, WR/DB Brennan Whipple, QB Jimmy VanDeilen

What’s new: Of the 24 players on varsity last season, 10 were seniors. That means the Mustangs have a lot of holes to fill. The biggest question this spring is who will replace Culbreth, who rushed for more than 1,600 yards last season and scored 20 touchdowns. The leading candidates are Smith and Ojeda. Northside also lost four of its starting offensive linemen. The lone holdover is Tomlin, who will be the anchor of a young group. The one constant on offense is VanDeilen, who returns after throwing for more than 1,000 yards and rushing for 600 more last season. Smith and Ojeda will catch plenty of balls out of the backfield. Other targets include Fossen, Swain and Whipple. The defense also will be young with Tomlin anchoring the line and Smith the leader among linebackers. Depth will be a concern with a little more than 20 kids for the spring, meaning many will have to go both ways.

Audible: “We lose Culbreth who gave us a spark in the backfield. But we’ll still strive to be balanced on offense, even with VanDeilen returning.” — Dobson

Did you know? Northside had one of the area’s top offenses last season, averaging 29 points and more than 460 yards per game.

Spring game: Northside Christian at Skyway Park, 7:30 p.m. Saturday

2010 schedule
Sept. 3     vs. Trinity Prep
Sept. 10     at St. Petersburg Catholic
Sept. 17     vs. Admiral Farragut
Sept. 24     vs. Shorecrest
Oct. 1     at Victory Christian
Oct. 15     at Fort Lauderdale Calvary Christian
Oct. 22     vs. Bell
Oct. 29     vs. Indian Rocks Christian
Nov. 5     vs. Agape Christian
Nov. 12     at Calvary Christian

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