Head on over to the Capital Gazette to check out an awesome slide show and article about our 2015 Football outlook!
Coach: Rob Harris (30-12), fifth year
OFFENSE: Though the Bruins graduated last year’s Capital Gazette Player of the Year, quarterback Canaan Gebele, Harris is confident Emmett Davis can step right in and produce. Davis played sparingly last year in relief of Gebele, but has done enough in offseason camps and combines to get looks from several college programs.
“Emmett is a very talented, athletic kid,” Harris said. “He can run the ball and he can throw the ball.”
The Bruins also graduated first-team All-County receiver Alec Ruden, who hauled in 12 touchdowns last year, but still have plenty of talent operating out of their option-based pistol offense. The Bruins return only two linemen in center Ryan McNeal and Kyle Boston, but Harris says this year’s line is the biggest he’s had in his five years as head coach.
Sophomore Taylor Bohanan will anchor the backfield and Harris is excited about the sophomore’s potential. Chris Watts, who saw considerable action last year, is a dynamic playmaker and should get plenty of targets from Davis, while Kevin Hickox will be the other slot receiver. Four or five others will rotate in at wideout.
DEFENSE: The Bruins will operate out of their normal 3-3 base, but will do so with just two returning starters.
Ali’i Niumatalolo, who’s already received eight college offers, was a first-team All-County selection last year with 108 tackles, including 67 solo and 12 for losses, along with four sacks and two interceptions. He’ll be joined by fellow linebacker Ryan Kennedy, who had 80 tackles last year, as the only returning starters on a defense that gave up just 12.5 points a game last year.
Juan McKinney and Thor Ferreira will roam the defensive backfield, while John Forrester and Glen Burnie transfer Darnell Creek are each what Harris calls “a dominating presence” at the defensive end slots.
“Replacing that many players is definitely a concern,” Harris said. “We do have some talented kids, though.”
SPECIAL TEAMS: Riley McNulty will handle placekicking duties, while Ryan Sutphin is a talented long snapper. Bohanan will punt, while Harris will use Watts in the return game in an effort to get him as many touches as possible.
OUTLOOK: There were plenty of reasons to be proud of last year’s unbeaten regular season, but the Bruins have some unfinished business this year. The motivation this year is to keep the momentum going in the regular season, but finish with a playoff run.
Despite returning just two starters on both sides of the ball, Broadneck is just one of two teams in the county ranked in the top 25 of the Maryland High School Football State Poll with a preseason ranking of No. 24. With Davis stepping in to lead the offense and Niumatalolo poised for another dominating season on defense, the potential is there for the Bruins to remain near the top of the county.
“I’m proud of those kids. That was a fun run and a great ride,” Harris said. “We understand how this county works. You have to play some tough games in the regular season, and then in the playoffs you have to throw the records out the window.”
Compiled by Bob Hough
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