De La Salle
Coach Mike Boehm and the Meteors are riding high into this game with a 4-0 record on the season. This team has dominated so far averaging a little over 40 points on offense while giving up about 10 points per game on defense. The knock on this De La Salle team’s success so far is that their oppoents have combined to go 2-14 thus far. Yes, 4 of those combined 14 loses can be attributed to this De La Salle team, but it just doesn’t look like the most fearsome schedule on paper. I’m not declaring this Meteor squad a bad team, far from it, rather I’m just pointing out the softness of their early season schedule. After this game against St. Francis, De La Salle has a very tough end of the season schedule with matchups against Montini, Mount Carmel, Marmion and Fenwick.
This team is very talented with numerous D1 recruits including with 6’2″ 210 lb WR Eric Rooks (LPI #4 WR). Rooks is the go to guy in this offense and, along with senior Ryan James, is where junior QB Dorian Woods will look a lot this game against St. Francis. Junior Nick Boehm holds an offer from Louisiana Tech and leads this OL. I’ve heard good things about 5’6″ 180 lb RB Devin Michicich as the workhorse RB for this Meteor offense and I cannot wait to see what he can do.
The defensive side of the ball is just as deep if not deeper than the De La Salle offense. Sophomore Wynston Russell is an athletic safety that already has offers from UCLA and Western Michigan. Byron Perkins is another excellent DB for this Meteor defense already holding offers from Iowa State and Louisiana Tech. Perkins is a long (6’2″ 175 lbs) and physical CB that will have more offers before its all said and done. Another kid I really like on this defense is the athletic and very versatile LB/ATH Joseph Bonds. I recently interviewed Bonds and was also very impressed with his attitude and character. Ebrima Njie and Tyresse King are big DL that will look to do some damage in the St. Francis backfield this game.
Other Players To Watch
Justin Garner, Frank Ramundo, Anthony Woods
Keys To The Game
Offense: Woods has to connect with his weapons Rooks and James on the outside to move the chains. If the passing game struggles, Michicich will have to pick up the slack and carry the load on the ground.
Defense: This team is very deep on defense and I can seem them having a great day as a unit. They have to limit mistakes and not give this St. Francis offense any second or third chances.
Wheaton St. Francis
After going 5-4 last year, new head coach Joe Lepsche is off to a rough start in his St. Francis coaching career with an 0-4 record scoring a total of 14 points in all 4 games combined. Yes, the 0-4 record is due in part to a rough early season schedule with games against quality teams in Loyola (4-0), Marmion (4-0), St. Viator (2-2) and Geneva (2-2), while scoring a total of 14 points in 4 games is more so the reason for the Spartans early season struggles. Big bodied seniors Shane Walker (6’5″ 285 lbs and hold an offer from Valpo) and Anthony De Feo (6’8″ 300 lbs) are two guys I’ll be looking out for this game. Walker and De Feo will be keep the talented Meteor DL off of senior QB John Brundage this game. Brundage needs to be at the top of his game to beat this unforgiving De La Salle defense. Junior Sam Sidari will lead the way on the ground and will look to spark this Spartan offense. This receiving core, made up of sophomore Joe Lang, junior Sidney Moore, and junior Tanner Spinks is young and is a group to watch over the next few seasons. University of St. Thomas commit Greg Bogdanski is a returning all conference LB/FB with good size (6’1″ 225 lbs) that will look to slow down the high powered Meteor offense. Junior John Vohasek and 6’2″ 220 lb Andrew Olson are 2 more linebackers to watch.
Other Players To Watch
Gabe Meyer, Nolan Pechan, Michael Cascella
Keys To The Game
Offense: The OL is going to have to step up as QB Brundage will likely be under a lot of pressure this game. Brundage will have to look to receivers Long, Moore and Spinks in the short passing game (slants, screens etc…). If the OL can give Brundage time to throw and this trio of receivers can make plays then the Spartan offense can surprise some people this game.
Defense: The Spartans have to get to Meteor QB Dorian Woods and not give him time to hook up with his weapons in Rooks and James on the outside. Whether that be blitzing LBs or DBs this defense has to keep the Meteor offense guessing and on their toes.
EDITOR’S NOTE: QB John Brundage, WR Sidney Moore and WR Tanner Spinks have been ruled out for this game due to injuries. Patrick England will be starting at QB, while Joe Lang and Mike Cascella will start at WR.