Sharpsville Blue Devils
Coach (season, record): Paul Piccirilli (16th season, 130-47)
2010 overall record: 10-2
2010 region record (place): 7-1 (co-champion)
2010 playoff results: Lost 56-33 to Mercyhurst Prep in the District 10 Class A semifinals.
Top players lost: Chad Piccirilli, Frank Joseph, Marcus Llewellyn, Brad Marstellar, Mike Riffe, Nate Titus, David Bain
Top returning players: Dylan Hogue, Spencer Bland, Ross Llewellyn, Joey Flynn, Dersean Alberty-Brown
Assistant coaches: Gary Baker, Leonard Grandy, Richard Pavone, Fred Sablack, Pat Campoli, Bryan Weber, Brett Pavone, Rick Grandy, Doug Levis, Steve Summers, Bill Henwood
Outlook: Sharpsville might be in complete rebuild mode this season. The Blue Devils were hit hard by graduation and it takes a lot to beat out Farrell, Mercer and others in Region 1. Chad Piccirilli, Frank Joseph, Marcus Llewellyn, Brad Marstellar, Mike Riffe, Nate Titus and David Bain all were named to the all-region team last year, while Piccirilli was also selected as an all-district defensive back. Joseph threw for 920 yards and 11 touchdowns, while Llewellyn (1,127 yards), Titus (882) and Joseph (636) leave huge holes in run production.
The Blue Devils return some experience in the backfield with Spencer Bland, Ross Llewellyn and Joey Flynn. The trio carried the ball at least 23 times each last fall and could see a big boost in reps. All-region lineman Dylan Hogue returns to anchor the line but Sharpsville will have almost a brand-new line after camp. The Blue Devils could get through the first three weeks of the season at 2-0 and develop some experience on the varsity level before diving into region play with up-and-coming West Middlesex. The Blue Devils end the season with a brutal stretch of games against Lakeview, Mercer, Farrell, Conneaut Valley and Linesville. Sharpsville will need to gain some momentum and experience heading into the second half of the season in order to return to the District 10 playoffs.
2 at Eisenhower 7
9 at Seneca 7
24 West Middlesex* 7
1 at Kennedy Catholic* 12
7 Lakeview* 7
14 at Mercer* 7
21 Farrell* 7
28 at Conneaut Valley* 7
4 Linesville* 7
Look for the Kickoff magazine at a Country Fair near you beginning Aug. 15. The 112-page magazine previews the upcoming District 10 football season, including top returning players, schedules, stats and more.
Wednesday: Slippery Rock
– Tom Reisenweber