Friday, August 14, 2009

Season preview: Mooresville football

Mooresville begins the season not only in a new conference, but also with a new coach who has the task of replacing 32 seniors from the 9-4, 2008 squad.

But while it seems daunting, head coach Steve McCurry, who comes to the Blue Devils from Greenville High School (2006-08) in Tennessee, has a track record for building successful program in a short amount of time. McCurry, who also was a head coach at Asheville Reynolds (NC) (2002-05), is 56-18 in his past seven seasons at the two schools.

“Everything is new for both me and the players,” McCurry said. “I don’t think we really know what to expect. But that can be both a strength and weakness, because our opponents won’t know much either.”

McCurry has already installed his aggressive style that includes a shotgun, one-back, four-wide, no-huddle offense and an attacking 4-3 defense that will Blue Devil opponents a new and different look. Senior tailback Marshaun Edwards, who has been impressive in practice after waiting his turn behind Pinkston for several years, will be the early focal point of the offense.

The quarterback position has yet to be decided between 6-foot-4 junior Patrick O’Brien and senior Caleb Raper and Jay Willis. But whoever is throwing the ball will have solid options as in seniors Cody Locklear, Dalton Pierce, Santonio Thompson and Bakary Torrence.

The Blue Devil offensive line lost a lot, but will does have some talent back in 6-foot-3, 266-pound senior Anthony Hill and center Ryan Rudy.

The defense, known as McCurry’s specialty, maybe a little more of a question mark with only three returnings starters. The strength will be senior defensive tackle Davontay Dixon with Pierce, Torrence, Thompson and Demarion Sherill making up an experience secondary.

-- Jay Edwards