Even on a day when a handful of high-profile players are receiving treatment or completing baseball season, Jesuit’s synthetic turf still teems with guys bedecked in physical upside.
There’s new QB Tommy Eveld, a nimble 6-foot-5 Tigers legacy (he’s Bobby’s brother). Or rising junior RT Robbie Gibbons, he of the superhuman bench-press repetitions. Or 6-3 sophomore-to-be Vincent Jackson, who could revolutionize the Tigers’ tight end position.
Yet second-year coach James Harrell scoffs when someone suggests his team, coming off an undefeated regular season, is loaded.
“Yeah, but somebody’s got to have the yeast to make it rise,” he said. “So that’s my job.”
Once all the Tigers converge on Alumni Field — receivers Travis Johnson and Bryce Walker, who combined for 76 catches last season, were in shorts Monday — Harrell could have a group capable of rising to altitudes not seen on campus in some time.
The passing game under new offensive coordinator Ty Alvarez appears stacked, and the Tigers should employ more formations, many of which will include a tight end for a change. At least five promising prospects have emerged at running back, which could be handled committee-style.
Harrell’s big concern at this point? Youth on the offensive front (Gibbons is the lone returning everyday starter), some holes defensively, and the question of whether his ingredients will respond to the proverbial yeast.
“Right now I guess overall chemistry (is the main concern), getting the things all together at this point here,” Harrell said. “We’re a little young on the O-line and that concerns me some, but at the skill positions we’re pretty good.”
Let’s play four (quarters)
A list of the area’s upcoming four-quarter spring games, all set for May 20 and all involving private schools:
Berkeley Prep at Bradenton Bayshore, 7:30 p.m.
Calvary Christian vs. Seffner Christian (at Brandon High), 7:30 p.m.
Gainesville Oak Hall vs. Cambridge Christian at Skyway Park, 7:30 p.m.
Carrollwood Day at Sarasota Cardinal Mooney, 7 p.m.
Tampa Catholic at Nature Coast, 7 p.m.
*Note: Jesuit participates in a four-team jamboree at Bloomingdale the same night
Numbers of the day
9 Berkeley Prep three-way star Nelson Agholor’s ranking on the initial Rivals100 for the Class of 2012
60 Jefferson DE/TE Tyriq McCord’s ranking on the same list
“The coaches said I could have a couple of days off or whatever, but I know I can’t take any days off. I have a lot of college coaches coming out there to watch me, so I’m not going to let them down after they traveled down here. I’m going to just show them what I can do on the football field.” — Alonso rising senior TB Brandon Holloway, who planned to join the Ravens for spring drills less than 48 hours after competing in three events Saturday at the Class 4A state track meet. Holloway medaled in the 100 meters
What they’re saying
Every day, we pose a question to our readers on our Facebook page. They’re keen to offer their two cents … and we’re printing the best response.
Friday’s question: Who’s the biggest, nastiest offensive lineman this spring, and why does he strike fear in opponents’ wee little hearts?
• Cody Waldrop (Armwood)! He’s nasty. I get hit by him every practice. He’s insane! — Craig “The Assassin” Carrington
Next up: A lot of talented football players are graduating this month. Who’s the toughest to replace and who will pick up the slack?
What’s your call? Go here, become a fan and give us your thoughts.