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Pasco County outlook

By Times staff

© St. Petersburg Times,
published August 30, 2001


CLASS 4A, DISTRICT 6

LAND O'LAKES

COACH: John Benedetto

2000 RECORD: 7-4

PLAYER TO WATCH: Sophomore quarterback Drew Weatherford should lead a more balanced offense as it tries to regroup following the graduation of two-time county rushing champion Godfrey Pestana. Weatherford threw for 797 yards and seven touchdowns as a freshman.

MITCHELL

COACH: Scott Schmitz

2000 RECORD: First year

PLAYER TO WATCH: Senior quarterback Sean Gillen, who leads the first-year program after a solid 6-2 record in junior varsity play last season. The Mustangs have good depth in the backfield as well, led by fullback Derek Shortz, a transfer from East Lake.

RIDGEWOOD

COACH: Wayne Parzik

2000 RECORD: 4-6

PLAYER TO WATCH: Fullback Adamm Oliver is a tough 6 feet 4, 220 pounds and rushed for 278 yards in a reserve role last year. Pair him with 6-5 quarterback Jon Emminger and you have the tallest backfield on the North Suncoast by a few inches.

RIVER RIDGE

COACH: Mike DeGennaro

2000 RECORD: 5-5

PLAYER TO WATCH: Quarterback Tim Dare has a slew of tall targets to connect with downfield. Tight end Adam Eberle and receiver Jared Tzoucalis are 6-3, and that's short compared to first-year receiver Alex Wilson, who checks in at 6-5.

CLASS 3A, DISTRICT 7

WESLEY CHAPEL

COACH: John Castelamare

2000 RECORD: 5-5

PLAYER TO WATCH: Tyrone Tomlin, the county's top receiver last season, shifts to fullback, bolstering a backfield where the Wildcats already had a two-year starter in wingback Kenny Roberts. Third-year quarterback Spencer Honeycutt is surrounded by talented skill players.

ZEPHYRHILLS

COACH: Tom Fisher

2000 RECORD: 5-5

PLAYER TO WATCH: Michael Moody is likely the county's top runner, having rushed for 1,139 yards and 11 touchdowns last season. Look for transfer quarterback James Adamo, a sturdy 6-3, 220 pounds, to give the Bulldogs a dangerous 1-2 punch.

PASCO

COACH: Ricky Thomas

2000 RECORD: 4-6

PLAYER TO WATCH: Fullback Devon Hicks has coach Ricky Thomas excited: "I believe if Devon Hicks ever makes up his mind ... that he doesn't want to be stopped, then I don't think anyone in this county is going to stop him," the Pirates coach raves.

GULF

COACH: Keith Newton

2000 RECORD: 1-9

PLAYER TO WATCH: Bubba Violante, the Buccaneers' top returning rusher, could help get Gulf out of a funk that saw it drop its final six games by a combined 227 points last season. Quarterback Jeff Blanchette is another part of a new-look offense.

HUDSON

COACH: Terry Voyles

2000 RECORD: 1-9

PLAYER TO WATCH: Junior fullback Kenny Eva rushed for 398 yards last season, stepping in when other players fell to injury. This time he's the starter, and will get help in the backfield from wingback Dale Lemons.

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