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Carrollwood Day: Season preview

Coach: Lane McLaughlin (first varsity season; 10-3 last season with six-man football) | District: Independent | Colors: Red, white, black

A-listers Billy Embody

Junior quarterback passed for 33 touchdowns last season when Carrollwood Day competed in six-man football. Not necessarily gifted with a cannon arm, Embody's knowledge of coach Lane McLaughlin's short passing game should help the Patriots' transition to 11-man football.

Darius Bing

Despite an offense that stresses the pass and thinks about running later, Bing was productive last season. He rushed for 1,200 yards last year and again will be the top rushing threat out of the backfield.

Matt Monteilh

A solid all-around player, Monteilh's impact will come from his hybrid wide receiver/running back spot. He accounted for 1,400 combined yards a season ago (600 rushing and 800 receiving).

Rising star Jon "Deuce" Gruden

Buccaneers head coach Jon Gruden's son, Deuce, 5-foot-7 and 165 pounds, will line up all over the field for Carrollwood Day but primarily will be used as a versatile slot back.

Stunt man Mak Djulebegovic

Guy who does the dirty work

A 6-foot-5, 220-pound sophomore McLaughlin called the "hardest working player he had ever been around," Djulebegovic will man the key left tackle spot on the offensive line and play defensive end.

Cutting-room floor

Three things the Patriots need to avoid

1. Being intimidated. CDS will be in unchartered territory in its introductory season into 11-man high school football. Previously a six-man program (and a good one, as CDS won the six-man private school state title), the Patriots have to show they belong — even in the smaller world of private school football.

2. Tiring out those bodies. Depth will be an issue, with fewer than 30 players on the roster. Players lining up on offense and defense will be mandatory.

3. Lose their enthusiasm. CDS has an entire campus revved up about its foray into traditional high school football. When the Patriots open the season with Leesburg First Academy, they'll do so in a new on-campus stadium.

Review

"Lane was a tremendous asset when he was (an assistant) at Jefferson. He's got so much enthusiasm. He always wanted his own program. I think Lane will take what he learned at a higher level and take it to that level. And I think they will be very successful." — Jefferson coach Mike Fenton

Rod Gipson, Times correspondent

Carrollwood Day: Season preview 09/04/08 [Last modified: Thursday, September 4, 2008 3:35pm]
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