BC High School Football Pre-Season Predictions
Pre-Season Top Ten
1. Hugh Boyd Trojans: Loaded with returning talent, AA JV Champs in 06, this team is ready to make a run for all the marbles. This year’s crew has played in a lot of big games and has made very deep runs into the playoffs at all levels. A punishing schedule will have this squad ready for BC Place come November.
2. Lord Tweedsmuir Panthers: The Panthers are big, strong and very deep at all positions. Coach Thornton and company can hear the clock tick in 08 as this is their last year of AA ball. LT wants to leave its mark in the record books by winning the championship that has proved elusive these past four years. If this crew has the patience to lean on people and bring their physical prowness to bear, they could be an unstoppable force. In the back of their heads however,lurks the 07 semi-final game. Way too much like the Lesner-Mirr fight this spring.
3. Seaquam Seahawks: Coach Pechet knows how to win the big ball games. Seaquam has quietly built one of the provincial powerhouses to be reckoned with. Varsity and JV championships are no stranger to the Seaquam program and there is a very solid foundation of second year varsity and solid JV’s moving up.
4. Mission Roadrunners: The young varsity squad took its knocks last year while the JV’s continued to develop a solid crew to move up. This is an “up-year” for the Roadrunners and a Coach Watrin led squad in the now mature Mission program will be tough to beat.
5. Ballenas Whalers: The Whalers are going to be tough to beat. The loss of only a half dozen or so players from last year’s playoff squad bodes well for team maturity and continuity within the program. Their quarterback position is very solid, they are faster as a team than ever before and they have a loaded coaching staff. The boys in blue play a tough schedule that will have them primed for divisional contests in October. A week two tilt vs #6 Windsor not only renews a great rivalry but could be a second or third round playoff preview.
6. Windsor Dukes: Never, ever count out the most storied and championship-rich program in AA history. Coach Schuman has another solid crew moving up to join his veteran varsity crew. The Dukes play an exceedingly tough schedule week in and week out this season. Should the Dukes prevail in key divisional contests vs Boyd, Seaquam and Handsworth a top seed in the playoff draw could pave the way to the Dome at the end of November. Nobody out-prepares Coach Schuman so this scenario is very possible.
7. Handsworth Royals: Oops he did it again! Coach Prepchuck wins another championship when seemingly out-gunned by his opponent. The Royals this year may have more talent than they did in 07! The league this year however is stronger than it was in 07. If there is a team in the league that gets better each week it will be Handsworth. Come November the Royals will be a dangerous foe. Look for a slow start that gains momentum as the season progresses. The West is one tough conference and a first or second place seed entering the playoff tournament will be a tall order. This is another year that will tax AA football’s Jedi Master’s coaching skills. He hasn’t faltered yet!
8. South Delta Sundevils: A terrific 07 varsity season has set the table for a very talented crew of athletes to join the returning varsity ranks. South Delta now has a pre-season swagger that wasn’t there a year ago. By all accounts this crew will be ready to climb the ladder to a second consecutive playoff appearance and from there, anything is possible.
9. Earl Marriot Mariners: The Mariners are ready to challenge their divisional rivals for top-dog status in the East. Big-strong and fast, the Mariners are moving to AAA ball in 09. They would love nothing more than to go there with an AA championship banner hanging at their school. It’s a scenario that is not impossible for this up and coming football program.
10. John Barsby Bulldogs: A scrappy 07 squad returns having lost only five players to graduation. This year’s Barsby squad has plenty of depth and experience to go along with the largest roster since 2000. There is no doubt that this squad can compete and this group could be playing for a number one playoff seed when they arrive in Parksville this Halloween for 2008’s Border Battle.
Honorable Mention: Rick Hanson Hurricanes, Clarence Fulton Maroons, Timberline Wolves.