The SCVarsity.com Midlands Area Preseason Top Ten polls reveal at
least three teams in the area who could challenge for the deepest run
in the playoffs, while several others are going to be contenders in the
1. DUTCH FORK SILVER
FOXES (5A) – The Foxes have two of the best running backs
in the state in the same backfield and are solid at every position. The
only position with a question mark is at quarterback and that is
because the Foxes have two that could start. Neither give the option of
being a lethal run threat but both throw the ball very well.
2. BROOKLAND-CAYCE BEARCATS
(3A) – The Bearcats are the best team in the all-star area
of the Midlands. They return one of the state’s most dangerous athletes
at quarterback, junior Reed Charpia, as well as several senior
prospects with offers on the table. They came close to winning the
lower state semi-finals last season and will be better this season if
they can stay healthy.
3. SPRING VALLEY VIKINGS
(5A) – The Vikings return a solid starter at quarterback
and several good receivers to make their flexbone offense a threat over
the top, as well. They are anchored on defense by one of the state’s
top prospects, linebacker Channing Tindall and this team could very
well be the team to challenge Dutch Fork in region play because of the
style of offense they run.
4. SUMTER GAMECOCKS (5A)
The Gamecocks return strong talent from a team that was much improved
under Coach Barnes in his first season last year. They have looked good
in preseason and will play a physical brand of football.
5. RIDGE VIEW BLAZERS (4A)
The Blazers lost some talent in key spots but return 13 players who
were starters or part time starters from their 10 win season last year.
They sputtered a bit in jamboree play but it’s difficult to put a lot
of stock in those scrimmages.
GRIFFINS (3A) – I like this team with 13 starters back, a
strong running back combo and speed on the defense. Their team speed
will make them tough to beat in region play.
7. WHITE KNOLL
TIMBERWOLVES (5A) – I had originally picked this team to
be the 2nd best in Region 5-5A but they have struggled a bit with
consistancy on offense in some preseason outings. They have a strong
set of running backs, are big up front on both sides of the football.
They need to improve at the quarterback position to make them a
contender in their region.
8. CHAPIN EAGLES (4A)- The Eagles have looked sharp in their off-season and pre-season
showings. They are well coached and won’t make a lot of mistakes.
Consistant play at quarterback and assignment play on defense make them
the favorite in their region.
PANTHERS (2A) – I did not have this team picked at all in
the preseason polls until I had a chance to see them…twice now. This
team is sound and while they don’t have any depth, their 1’s make them
a dangerous football team. They have a sophomore cornerback in Ke’Shaun
Williams who may be the best underclassman prospect in the Midlands
10. BLYTHEWOOD BENGALS
(5A) – The Bengals have a solid core of returners on
defense but will need to find juice on offense to compete in the Region
5. Coach Brian Smith is as good as any at getting the most from the
least and he will find a way to win football games they are not
supposed to win.
OUTSIDE LOOKING IN: Newberry, Richland Northeast, Ben Lippen, Irmo