As the 2010 prep football season approaches, the St. Petersburg Times will break down each position on the North Suncoast. Today we take a look at the offensive line.
1. Jeff Kruse, Gulf: In the recent tradition of Buccaneers blockers, he’s good at providing running lanes and protecting the quarterback. At 6-3, 275 pounds, the junior can play either guard position and has proven a critical piece of Gulf’s rushing attack as a three-year starter.
2. Jamal Carter, Pasco: The 5-foot-11, 260-pounder provides plenty of punch despite his relatively small size. He’ll be leaned on heavily to provide leadership and plenty of blocking for players such as running back Janarion Grant and quarterback Jacob Guy. Becoming a wall for these younger players will be paramount to helping them have success. It all starts with Carter, who has played every position on the line and seems to excel at center.
3. T.J. Chamberlin, Land O’Lakes: The 6-foot-3, 250-pounder is a second-year starter. He’s moving from center to right tackle where he should be able to utilize some of the skills he has picked up as a wrestler. Chamberlin was recently named top offensive lineman at the all-Madden Camp in Bradenton and will also be the Gators’ deep snapper.
4. William Alderman, Hernando: The Leopards’ senior captain will play another big role in helping Hernando’s running game, charged by running back Alvin Delaine. The 6-foot-3, 225-pounder helped the Leopards to 2,864 rushing yards and a 7-3 finish in 2009.
5. Jason Janus, Anclote: The 6-foot-4, 255-pounder is the Sharks’ most experienced lineman. He’ll play right tackle and defensive tackle. Coach Matt Wicks expects to see the often soft-spoken senior grab more of a leadership role in every sense of the phrase. If he can help take command of the locker room and the huddle, he could be an important anchor for the offense.
Others to watch
Stephen Cottrell, Zephyrhills: The Bulldogs’ top lineman is benching more than 300 pounds, and showed a commitment to new coach Reggie Roberts with a constant presence in the weight room. Roberts said he’s another coach on the field.
Matt Sanders, Sunlake: The 6-foot-2, 230-pounder will be part of a strong offensive line that must make up for the loss of Tyler Hisamoto.
John McCloskey, Springstead: The 5-foot-9, 225-pounder has been described by coach Bill Vonada as tough and loyal. “If you’re hanging off a cliff, John is the guy you want holding the end of the rope,” he said.
John Fiore, Land O’Lakes: The 5-foot-10, 230-pounder has strong academics and a solid work ethic.
Terry Linton, Anclote: The 6-foot-2, 280-pounder is an up-and-coming lineman, whom Wicks wants to build his line around.
Other stories in this series: