Kenmore West Blue Devils (6-3)
Coach: Rich Harris, 14th season
Homefield: Crosby Field
Program started: 1921
Outlook: The Blue Devils have been a Class AA final four team in five of the last seven years. Two of their losses last year were to Jamestown. Four-year starter Trent White is a physical WR with 4.6 speed. He had 342 yards in receptions last year. Junior Jayson Taylor will use his 4.7 speed in what he expects will be a big year at LB/WR. Junior RB Terell Ford is also a threat to catch the ball out of the backfield with 409 receiving yards last year. He’s also a dangerous return man. Junior Deangelo Walker-Johnson takes over at QB. He was the NFL’s 100-meter champion in track. “He will be an eye-opener in Western New York,” Harris said of the first-year starter. This is coach Harris’ 30th season with the West program.
Sept. 5 at Williamsville South, 7 p.m.
Sept. 13 vs. Orchard Park, 2 p.m.
Sept. 20 vs. Lockport, 2 p.m.
Sept. 27 at Niagara Falls, 2 p.m.
Oct. 2 vs. Williamsville North, 4:30 p.m.
Oct. 11 vs. Niagara-Wheatfield, 2 p.m.
Oct. 18 at Kenmore East, 2 p.m.
Lockport Lions (3-6)
Coach: Greg Bronson, eighth season
Homefield: Max D. Laderer Field
Program founded: 1895
Outlook: Senior QB Tyler Fraass, pressed into service early last year, threw for approximately 1,200 yards and 13 TDs. He looks more comfortable in the pocket and is more decisive. Junior Andrew Bronson moves from DB to LB and also will carry the ball. Junior CB Dante Mount led team in interceptions last year with four. He may miss the first game or two after breaking his wrist in a team camp. DE D’Andre Jenkins has gotten stronger and more aggressive this offseason and will also play T/TE on offense. Special teams ace Brandon Few will handle the kicking duties and also play some DL. TE/DB Dominic Ball (6-2, 220) is another key two-way starter. Fraas, along with LBs David DiTullio and AJ Rivera, are captains.
Sept. 5 at Lancaster, 7:30 p.m.
Sept. 13 vs. Niagara-Wheatfield, 2 p.m.
Sept. 20 at Kenmore West, 2 p.m.
Sept. 27 at Starpoint, 2 p.m.
Oct. 4 vs. Niagara Falls, 2 p.m.
Oct. 11 vs. Iroquois, 2 p.m.
Oct. 18 at Williamsville North, 2 p.m.
Niagara Falls Wolverines (1-8)
Coach: Don Bass, eighth season
Home field: Niagara Falls Complex
Program founded: 2000
Outlook: The Wolverines are looking at starting eight underclassmen on offense. “We’re as young as we’ve ever been, but I like the squad,” said Bass. Only two starters return on offense: RB Shaolin McCray and OL Anthony Vargas, both senior captains. McCray suffered a high ankle sprain in Week Five last year and was unable to return. “He’s a scat back type, but he’ll take you on up the middle, and if he gets to the edge, he’s gone,” said Bass. Two returners on defense are FS Jaylin Smith and DE Joe Welch. Junior QB Drew Sturback has a good handle on running the spread option. His targets will be WRs Dequan Hudson and Breon Harris. LB Haseen Pruitt will start as a sophomore.
Sept. 6 at Niagara-Wheatfield, 2 p.m.
Sept. 12 at Cheektowaga, 7 p.m.
Sept. 20 vs. Williamsville North, 2 p.m.
Sept. 27 vs. Kenmore West, 2 p.m.
Oct. 4 at Lockport, 2 p.m.
Oct. 11 vs. McKinley, 2 p.m.
Oct. 18 vs. Clarence, 2 p.m.
Niagara-Wheatfield Falcons (2-7)
Coach: Brent Tylec, second season
Homefield: Terry Harvey Field
Program founded: 1958
Outlook: Senior Andrew Doricko returns, having gained confidence after each game at QB. Slot receiver Jeremy Mixon is on a mission after tearing his ACL in the first quarter of last year’s season opener. Mixon uses his 6-1 height and aggressiveness to win those battles in the air. Three-year starter Nate Williams will anchor a young line. Billy Black was a DT last year and this year will add OL. The Falcons’ move from Class A North to Class AA North is ill-timed. They haven’t had modified sports for four years, they cut players this year due to lack of equipment and they have won fewer than five games in the last five years. “We have a lot of other issues most other coaches don’t have to consider,” said Tylec.
Sept. 6 vs. Niagara Falls, 2 p.m.
Sept. 13 at Lockport, 2 p.m.
Sept. 20 vs. Hutch-Tech, 2 p.m.
Sept. 27 vs. Williamsville North, 2 p.m.
Oct. 4 at St. Mary’s/Lancaster, 1 p.m.
Oct. 11 at Kenmore West, 2 p.m.
Oct. 17 at Lew-Port, 7 p.m.
Williamsville North Spartans (9-4)
Coach: Mike Mammoliti, 14th season
Homefield: Wmsv. North Field
Program founded: 1968
Outlook: The Spartans look to follow up last year’s historic season with 13 starters back on both sides. Last year’s state finalists will be led by DL Duke Hwang, an All-NYS honorable mention who has given a verbal commitment to UB. He’s 6-2, 230 with 4.85 speed and exceptional athleticism. Brothers Nick and Jake Ames are three-year starters who both play LB and TE. OT George Attea, another three-year starter and captain, will continue his career at Princeton. Zak Kelly is a three-year starter at WR/FS and is another part of a strong junior class. LB John Becht returns for his third season as a starter. TE/LB Nick Pilon is back after starting last season as a sophomore.
Sept. 6 vs. Grand Island, 2 p.m.
Sept. 13 vs. East, 2 p.m.
Sept. 20 at Niagara Falls, 2 p.m.
Sept. 27 at Niagara-Wheatfield, 2 p.m.
Oct. 2 vs. Kenmore West, 4:30 p.m.
Oct. 10 at Frontier, 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 18 vs. Lockport, 2 p.m.