Thursday, June 12, 2014

Graduates Leave Holes to Fill for the USA South Teams

While final recruiting numbers are still unknown, the losses that rosters suffered from graduation, is much easier to predict. Here is a look at which teams have a lot of holes to fill, and which ones will bring back the most players from last year. These numbers are based on teams 2013 rosters.

Maryville- The USA South defending champion will have a good amount of work to do to replace the 14 Seniors who have moved on. Of those 14, 9 were on the offense. 4 of those are offensive linemen. I am expecting that the experience will be missed, but they will be a strong unit again this year.

Christopher Newport- Always powerful CNU will enter their final year in the USA South with 17 holes left from their 2013 roster. 9 of those are on the defensive side of the ball. 6 on offense, and 2 special teams members. Look for CNU to be solid, looking to close out their time in the conference with one final championship.

Averett - First year Head Coach Clieve Adams will have 14 holes to fill from the 2013 roster- 6 offensive players, 7 defensive players, and 1 special teams player. Coach Adams and company will be working hard to get the Cougars program back on track in 2014.

LaGrange - The Panthers have the fewest holes to fill of any team. With a roster that only loses 7 players, Look for this team to be in a strong position to contend for the conference title. 3 offense, 4 defense.

Methodist- A strong 2013 team will have 13 that will not be back. 6 offensive players, and 7 defensive players. Look for this team also to be a strong contender. Many positive strides were made by the 2013 Monarchs, and I look for this to continue.

Ferrum- The Panthers lose 14 from last year. 8 offensive players, 5 defensive, and 1 special teams player. While this is a lot to lose, I look for Ferrum to improve this season, and to continuously improve as the season goes on.

North Carolina Wesleyan- With only 2 wins in 2013, a casual onlooker may not give the Bishops much of a chance this year. I however think this team will be quite strong. They only lose 8 players from last years squad. 6 offense, and 2 defense. 2 wins and 8 losses is a deceptive record, and all opponents should approach the Bishops with caution.

Huntingdon- Having finished with a 7-3 record, Huntingdon will lose the most of any of the conference schools. 21 players will be gone from last years roster. 10 offensive and 10 defensive players departed, along with 1 special teams player. Huntingdon has a winning reputation, and will likely still be strong, but these roster vacancies will be a challenge to the coaches.

Greensboro- The Pride will only lose 8 players from last years 2-8 team. 6 offensive and 2 defensive players. I look for the returning experience to be quite a help, but it will likely be an uphill climb to contention.

These are not my predictions, and the teams are presented in a random order. Also, the numbers stated in regard to teams players that will not return, are gathered based on the 2013 rosters from each team, and presume any player listed as a Senior in 2013, will not be back this coming season.

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