City League preview: Title up for grabs

A breakdown of the City League

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Team to beat

Perry -- There is no overwhelming favorite in the City League this year, but with quarterback Greg McGhee, this team has championship potential. McGhee very well could be the No. 1 player in the City League. Coach Bill Gallagher said he will use a "running back by committee" approach in the backfield. Other top players are fullback-linebacker Ray Taylor, receiver-defensive back Gerald Sherrell, receiver-defensive back Devin Ghafor and lineman Ryan Shaneyfelt.

Contenders

Brashear -- The Bulls have an experienced line, but inexperienced skill-position players. Receivers Manny Reed and Dom Patterson, linemen Don Copeland and Mike Barron, and running back Joe Nesbit are expected to carry the load.

Schenley -- The defending City League champion must rebuild its offensive line, but coach Jason Bell has some talented skill-position players. De'Andre Black, who had 11 TDs last year at quarterback, will play running back, receiver and quarterback.

The others

Allderdice -- With nine returning starters on both offense and defense, the Dragons are looking for big improvement on last year's 1-8 season. Mike Pfleger, a 6-4, 215-pound senior, is back for his third season as the starting quarterback and was All-City last year. Also, Marlon Brown, Patrick Ferguson and Jared Davis all return at running back.

Carrick -- Coach Jeff McCafferty believes he has some talent at the skill positions, "but like everyone, short on linemen," he said. Jajuan Thomas (WR-DB) was All-City last year.

Oliver -- The Bears lost to Schenley in the City League championship game last season. But with only four returning lettermen, Oliver will be hard-pressed to duplicate such success. Tyree Mathis (RB-LB) was the team's leading rusher last year and second-leading tackler. Josh Glover (C-LB) is a three-year starter and Kenneth Mathews (6-4, 260) is a top lineman.

Peabody -- Senior Dontae Forte, an All-City selection two years ago, returns at quarterback after missing most of last year with an ankle injury.

Westinghouse -- The Bulldogs won three of their final four games, and running back-receiver David Pryor was All-City. Running back Ronald Tyler and defensive tackle Kaleeq Anderson are two other returnees.

Langley -- Improvement is the key word with the Mustangs. After making the City League playoffs two years ago, Langley was winless last year.



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