Around the county in 30 days
A daily spring preview of every football program in Hillsborough County.
Coach: Earl Garcia (16th season at Hillsborough, 141-35; 23rd season overall, 174-73)
Last season: 9-3 (3-1 in district), District 11 runnerup, advanced to Class 4A region semifinals
District: Class 4A-10 (Armwood, Freedom, Middleton, Tampa Bay Tech)
Key losses: LB Marc Thomas,
SS Erik Fennell, FS Chuck Grace, DL Moses McCray
Who's back: RB Lindsey Lamar, Sr.; WR Colby Walden, Sr.; WR Charles Lovett, So.; WR/SS Torrence Mitchell, Jr.; LB Jarod Brisbon, Sr.; QB Tarean Austin, Jr.; OL Darrin Baker, Sr.; DE Troy Mercer, Sr.; FB Jamie Knott, So.; P/PK Evan Colborne, Sr.; LB Arthur Johnson, Jr.; DB Nate Singletary, Sr.
What's new: Garcia said this team contains "collectively the best set of skill players we've had since I've been here." The Terriers will be fast and athletic on offense — with speedsters Lamar, Walden, Lovett and Mitchell leading the way. All but Lovett ran track. The key will be Austin's ability to get the ball in the hands of the Terriers' speedy trio of wideouts so they can run in the open field. Mitchell will likely play both ways, and Garcia said he's confident he will be the best safety in the county while being on 60 percent of the offensive snaps. Hillsborough returns 15 starters (eight offensive, six defensive, one specialist).
Audible: "We're quietly optimistic. Last spring, we did not have a positive practice in the whole month of May. We were 0-18 as far as practices. This spring, we haven't had one poor practice. We like our football team." — Garcia
Did you know?: A rising junior, Terriers quarterback Austin already has scholarship offers from USF, Richmond, Wake Forest and Duke.
6:30 p.m. May 22
Aug. 29 vs. Lakewood (preseason)
Sept. 5 at Jefferson
Sept. 12 vs. Alonso
Sept. 19 vs. Chamberlain
Sept. 26 at Middleton
Oct. 3 vs. Riverview
Oct. 10 vs. Freedom
Oct. 16 at Plant
Oct. 24 vs. Armwood
Oct. 31 at Gaither
Nov. 7 at Tampa Bay Tech
Eduardo A. Encina, Times staff writer