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Riverview: Spring football capsule

Riverview quarterback Alex O’Regan will battle for the starting spot. He’s the placekicker as well.

DANIEL WALLACE | Times

Riverview quarterback Alex O’Regan will battle for the starting spot. He’s the placekicker as well.

Around the county in

30 days

A daily spring preview

of every football program

in the county.

Riverview

Coach: Bruce Gifford

(first season)

Last season: 5-5

District: 6A-6 (Durant, Sarasota, Sarasota

Riverview)

Key losses: RB Jahleel Addae, DL Quincy Barr,

OL Rashaun Byrd, TE Orson Charles, LB Tamaha

Halaufia

Who's back: OL Ryan Gascon, TE Reggie Jackson, RB Eric Lampe, QB/PK Alex O'Regan, LB Devin Ray

What's new: Gifford. After spending the past three seasons as a Sharks assistant (two as defensive coordinator), Gifford, 45, is taking over. This is his first head coaching position, but the Hillsborough County native has two decades of coaching experience. Riverview graduated a ton of talent, with more than 20 seniors departing. In the spring jamboree against East Bay, only nine of the Sharks' 22 starters were varsity players last year. The good news for the Sharks is that they have a strong core of seniors and, as usual, have no shortage of exceptional athletes. Ray (6 feet, 220 pounds), a three-year starter at middle linebacker, arguably is the team's top college prospect and has Division I-A potential. On offense, Riverview hopes a switch from the wing-T to the I-formation will spread things out a little bit and give the team's playmakers more space to make things happen. Lampe, a 5-11, 190-pound hard-nosed runner, and Armwood transfer Ronnie Johnson, one of the team's fastest players, give the Sharks a formidable running back combo. At quarterback, O'Regan and Jarid Heffers will battle for the starting spot. O'Regan is the team's placekicker as well — and a good one at that.

Audible: "Things are very promising. We have pretty good athletes, and we've got a pretty dang good chance to get in the playoffs with this bunch." — Gifford

Did you know?: Gifford played linebacker and special teams at Brandon, where he was a 1980 graduate.

Spring result

Riverview 13, East Bay 12

2008 schedule

Aug. 29 at

Bloomingdale (classic)

Sept. 5 vs. East Bay

Sept. 19 at Plant City

Sept. 26 vs. Plant

Oct. 03 at Hillsborough

Oct. 10 vs.

Sarasota Riverview

Oct. 16 at Newsome

Oct. 24 vs. Sarasota

Oct. 31 vs. Wharton

Nov. 7 at Durant

Nov. 14 vs. Brandon

Keith Niebuhr,

Times staff writer

Riverview: Spring football capsule 06/05/08 [Last modified: Thursday, June 5, 2008 10:49pm]
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