Athletes to watch in week 1 include Qadree Ollison, Canisius; Emaure Williams, Clarence; Jake Sisson, Jamestown; Kolbe Hughes, Williamsville North; Jaleel Battle, Williamsville East; Jeremiah Bill, Hamburg; Cody Oldro, Randolph; Jake Dolegala, St. Francis; Nigel Davis, St. Joe's; Evan Majewski, Starpoint; Alex Price, Kenmore West; Mitch Fuller, Lancaster.
Top Freshman: Isaiah McDuffie, Bennett
Top Sophomore: Foster Dell, Pioneer
Top Junior: Tyrone Wheatley, Jr., Canisius
Top Senior: Qadree Ollison, Canisius
Note: Keep Paul Hutzler "Stat man" in your prayers as he is currently being treated for prostate cancer.
Remember to listen to WGR 550 radio and Tony Caligiuri on Saturdays at 10:00 am for High School football.
Jake Schum, former Punter at Frontier & Buffalo State and the University of Buffalo, signed a contract with the Cleveland Browns in March and is competing for the starting punting job for the NFL team. The former Falcon star worked with Sam Watts from his special teams academy.
Pat Denecke, former St. Francis & Washington and Jefferson alumna, excelled in both High School and Collegiate football, and is now a graduate assistant coach at the University of Nevada.
WNY Quarterback Academy: Contact Jim Kubiak at 907-2132. The best developmental results in WNY.
The top high school media liason is Bryce Hopkins of Canisius.
Williamsville East will be led by Jaleel Battle and 1,500 lbs. of granite.
Southwestern has a 43-33-9 edge in its rivalry series with Falconer. The Trojans have won 16 consecutive games, dating back to 1997.
Over the past 5 years, Orchard Park and Sweet Home had the most Connolly Cup Finalists, with 6 each, followed by St. Joe's with 4. Canisius, Maple Grove and Williamsville South had three.
Tyler Mascio, after playing for Canisius last year, transferred to South Park where he will start at QB. Sparks also received transfers William and Wilquan Burrgess (from I-Prep) and Julius Cuthart (from Riverside). With these additional players, Sparks will be extremely talented on both sides of the ball this season. Mascio last year passed for 1,493 yards and 13 TDs, while rushing for 323 yards and 5 TDs for Canisius.
Best Dancer Referee: Joe "Twinkle Toes" Jastrzemski
Question: Why were there no players from Orchard Park in this year's Kensington Lions All-Star Classic, particularly since the Quakers hosted the event?
79 NFL players were born in WNY.
A total of 738 NFL Players were born in NYS.
Alex Neutz, Former All-WNY and NYS Players from Grand Island and now WR at the University at Buffalo, is on the watch list for Fred Biletnkoff Award for the nation's top Receiver.
Question: Why didn't the Msgr. Martin Assn. schedule St. Mary's vs. Cardinal O'Hara in the first week of the season? Lancers have no game in week one, while the Hawks play Nichols (who are not even in the Association.) It makes no sense. Lancers might only play 7 games, which is terrible considering Nick Vallone, Sr. RB who has rushed for 1,000 yards in each of his 1st two seasons, will be short-changed, as well as the rest of the Lancer Nation. Msgr. Martin leadership should be changed for allowing this to happen.
The Williamsville School Board and administration should vote to install a turf field at the District Stadium and name the complex after Jim Rusin. Rusin devoted 43 years of service to thousands of Williamsville Student Athletes.
The "Eiffel Towers" -- Jr. Linemen at Burgard: Emmaunel Moss, 6'5, 265-lb., and Twian Moss, 6'4, 245 lbs.
Msgr. Martin Playoff Titles: St. Francis (6), Canisius (5), St. Joe's (4) in the Large Division. Cardinal O'Hara (6) and St. Mary's (3) Titles in the "A" League when it existed.
Record for Clarence for 66 years of football (1946-2012) accrued 316 wins, 211 losses and 13 ties.
3 teams from Section VI are participating in the Carrier Dome Kickoff Classic (in Syracuse) the first weekend: West Seneca East vs. Central Sqaure; Cheektowaga vs. Jamesville-Dewitt, and Pioneer vs. Oneida.
Prior to playoffs for Section VI, 257 games are scheduled with 4 on Thursday, 168 on Friday and 85 on Saturday. In week 2, only nine games are scheduled for Saturday.
35 of WNY's 78 Football teams participated in the May Combine at the Bills' Stadium. Len Jankiewicz, Eric Jantzi, and Milt Dickerson did an excellent job in coordinating the event. Question: Where were the other schools and players?
Toughest Schedule: Clarence
Track Starts: Evan Majewski, Starpoint; Brennan Geiger, Gowanda; Devin Lindner, West Seneca East; Dawson Hillis, Orchard Park; Chris Doubek, Randolph; Tim Whelan, Cheektowaga; A.J. Licata, Frontier
Williamsville East's Offensive Line weighs 1,350 lbs: Pat Kelly (275), Chris Tideswell (310), Pat Faracca (310), Nick Molnar (250), Aiden LeCavalier (305). These five players are the Flames' Hogs.
Factors that can influence a team during the season: Chemistry, injuries, leadership, focus & effort.
Jacob Sisson, Jamestown's Sr. QB. has a 96 GPA, benches 245 lbs., & ran a 4.75-forty as a Junior. The Red Raider rushed for 469 yards and 4 TDs and passed for 1,655 yards and 16 TDs, completing 57% of his passes.
Niagara Wheatfield has completed renovations to its athletic complex. with new bleacher and locker rooms. Note: no turf field.
Frontier would have been better to renovate their athletic complex, including a turf field, rather than spending the funds to develop a new front entrance to the school.
Best long snapper: Tyler Hill, St. Joe's
Unsung Players: Adrian Drake, Sweet Home's Jr. WR/DB; Darren Thompson, St. Joe's Soph. RB.
Quinn Yan Lee plays soccer for Jamestown and is also the kicker for the Red Raiders' football team. Quinn is also a very talented basketball player.
Impact Transfer: Brad Zaffram earned All-WNY first team honors as a Sophomore. He recorded 82 tackles, including 9 for losses on offense. Brad was one of the most versatile players at Wide Receiver, and Running Back. He transferred to the Canisius and will play for the Crusaders this season.
There was a total of 28 players transferring to other schools for the 2013 season.
Win streaks: Canisius - 11, Randolph - 8
Top Special Teams: Tadriek Johnson, Amherst; Cameren Smith, Lackawanna
JFK won first Title in 2012 since 1975.
Silver Creek/Forestville's Jr. QB Nick Iskra passed for 971 yards and 9 TDs in 2012.
North Tonawanda has an edge in its rivalry with Tonawanda with a 63-31-0 record. The Lumberjacks have won 12 consecutive games against the Warriors, but the Warriors better be prepared in 2013
Phalla Musall, Ellicottville's 5'3, 130-lbs. RB/DB, is one of the smallest players in WNY, but a candidate for All-WNY Honors.
Aaron Jackson, Cheektowaga's Sr. QB, was 16-0 as a QB for the JV team in his Freshman and Sophomore year.
Canisius recorded an 11-0 unbeaten season in 2012. The last unbeaten season for the Crusaders was in 1976 (7-0-1 record). The school was a football doormat for several years, but now are one of the top programs in WNY and NYS.
Assistant Coaches Update: Dave Bonaquisti is the Defensive Coordinator for Iroquois JV squad, while Frank Payne takes over the Offense; Dan Troy moves from St. Joe's to Williamsville East.
Brandon Smiley, Sweet Home's Jr. WR/DB who is the All-WNY Candidate & son of Tim Smiley. Tim played for the Buffalo Bills in the early 90's. The first Arkansas State Star was drafted in 1989 by the Washington Redskins.
Tonawanda has now a first class athletic complex. Turf, lights, scoreboard, bleachers, and field house. Congratulations to the school board, administration and community.
Referee retirements: two outstanding and long-time WNY High School Football Officials. Doug Hartmeyer and Paul Trzybinski are retiring from officiating, although Paul will continue with the Association as Rules Interpreter. Both men are class acts and will be missed big time.
Tyrone Wheatley, Jr. at Canisius, is receiving a great deal of publicity because of his size - 6'6, 245-lb. talent and receiving scholarship offers from several schools including Alabama, Penn State, Michigan, North Carolina, and Syracuse. His brother, Terius, however, is under the radar screen, but the Sophomore 5'11, 175-lbs. Canisius WR/DB is just as talented. Last season as a JV player at Fayettville-Manilus in Syracuse, Terius scored 20 touchdowns and in track, he high jumped 6 feet and recorded a 19-11" in the long jump.
Congratulations to the Sweet Home administration and school board for including funding for the Freshman Football Program. Over the past two seasons the booster club had to raise the necessary funds.
The best indicator that high school football is in trouble. Hornell, which won 3 consecutive State Class B Titles (2009-11) and lost in 2012 State Finals after winning 51 straight games. They didn't field a JV team last year.
Congratulations to Vic Martucci, Drew Cerza and the other Clarence parents who stepped up, contributing $39,000 to this school's athletic programs. The fundraising drive helped to reinstate the modified and Freshman football among other programs, including several clubs.
All coaches should be like Williamsville South's Kraig Kurzanski. The Billie's Head Coach plays any team at any team. For example, this season, South will play at Orchard Park and at Timon/St. Jude, and will scrimmage Canisius.
Preseason Freshmen Coaches of the Year: Steve and Bob Ferrentino, Orchard Park.
Preseason Modified Football Coach of the Year: Brian Maley, Clarence.
Kudos to Kiel Liddell, Athletic Director for Chautauqua Lake for taking the initiative to have the Thunderbirds Football program merge this season with Maple Grove. It took vision, foresight, and guts to pull the merger off.
Brian Stoldt, Alden Sr. QB, has led the Bulldogs to a 22-1 Varsity record, including 2 Sectional Titles and a Far West Championship. The Sr. has thrown for 1,668 yards and 20 TDs while completing 57% of his passes. He has also rushed for 352 yards and 17 TDs.
Most Players to Bench 300-lbs. - 4, Williamsville East
Fastest: Josh Huffman, Canisius; Brandon Thomas, Cleveland Hill; Julius Cathcart, Burgard.
Biggest: Mike Lamb, Depew - 6'7, 300 lbs.
Strongest: Steven Stauss, Albion
Most Athletic Family: Maycocks, Randolph
Competitive Edge: "B" South, "C" North, "A" North
Programs ascending: Frontier, West Seneca East, Salamanca, Cheektowaga, Williamsville North, Depew, Pioneer, Burgard, Canisius
Programs descending: Niagara Wheatfield, Riverside, Tonawanda, Gowanda, Newfane, Cattaraugus/Little Valley.
David Fluellan, former All-WNY and All-State Player from Lockport, and current University of Toledo Sr., was named to the "watch list" for the Doak Walker Award. It is given annually to the top Running Back in the country. He is also on the watch list for the Maxwell Award, presented to the National Player of the Year. Fluellan is also on the watch list for the Walter Camp Player of the Year.
Observation: Can't understand why St. Francis did not have any players in the Kensington Lions All-Star Classic over the past two years, particularly since the Red Raiders had over 18 players that went on to play college football during this time.
Most Assistant Coaches: Canisius, 9
Student Athletes who use performance-enhancing drugs are cheaters and any use will come back to have a negative impact on them. Remember, if you start taking PED, you may not be able to stop. i.e. A-Rod.
Canisius is ranked #1 in the preseason rankings for the New England Corridor, which includes Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont.
Predictions: Week 1 Winners
Maple Grove/Chautauqua Lake
West Seneca East
Congrats to Kolbe Hughes, Williamsville North's Sr. WR/DB, for being selected to participate in the 8th Annual Offnse-Defense Bowl Week fstivities -- they take place at the Citrus Bowl in Orlando, Florida. The game is scheduled to be played January 1st, 2014.
The Offense-Defense All-American Showcase is part of a week-long seriesof events including the televised, 8th-annual Offense-Defense All-American Bowl, an All-Star football game showcasing 88 of the top high school seniors in the country and has featured current NFL pros, such as Cam Newton, Carlos Dunlap, and Dez Bryant among others before they were collegiate and later professional stars.
Kolbe is an outstanding athlete, and should earn All-WNY and All-State football honors this year.
Eden has made the playoffs the past 4 years, won two titles and played in the Class B Sectional Championship in the Stadium.
Okoya Anderson, former Orchard Park All-WNY and All-State Quaker plays linebacker at Erie Community College.
Dan Gronkowski, former Williamsville North Player was released by the Cleveland Browns.
Luke Tasker former St. Francis All-WNY and All-State player was recently released by the San Diego Chargers.
Chris Gronkowski, former Williamsville North Star was placed on injured reserve by the San Diego Chargers.
Jeremy Kelley former West Seneca West All-WNY player was released by the Indianapolis Colts.
Naaman Roosevelt, St. Joe's and University of Buffalo was cut by the Cleveland Browns.
A press conference has been called for Monday September 9th at 3:15 pm at Canisius High School when Qadree Ollison will announce his college choice to play football. The Crusader Senior has narrowed his choices to Penn State, Pittsburgh, Rutgers, Syracuse and Wisconsin. "Q" will make his official visit to the Badgers just prior to the press conference. Prediction: Pittsburgh or Wisconsin.
Teams that looked good in scrimmages include Eden, South Park and Canisius.