5A Preview

Tanner Gentry of Grandview

Traditionally strong the 5A Centennial once again boasts some of Colorado's top programs.

Favorite: Grandview

On paper this could be the year for Grandview to get back to the 5A title game; fast, talented and aggressive on defense the Wolves potentially have their deepest team in some time. Key to this return to the top of 5A will be the play of QB Reece Weber. Weber's transition to QB is eased with a bevy of talented skill players including All-Stater Tanner Gentry and running backs Cassius Davis, Hayden Porter and Isaiah Jackson. All augmented by a big O-line.

Defensively, linebackers Robbie Holtam and Kolton Johnson are a very good duo that anchor the in your face Grandview D. Tanner Gentry's coverage ability should allow the front seven to pin back their ears and get after QBs.

Contender: Cherry Creek

Many of the storylines of the past few months will soon become secondary once Cherry Creek starts to win games, and they will. The Bruins have talent and Logan and crew will get it lined up. Keep an eye on a very diverse set of skill players made up by athlete Hunter Burton, fire hydrant back Tahj Willingham and talented quarterback Luke Papillion. Last season Creek gave up nearly 30 points a game. That will have to be addressed if Cherry Creek wants to once again be at the top of 5A.

Sleeper: Cherokee Trail

I have always been a proponent of the concept of speed kills and last season Cherokee Trail placed one of the fastest teams in the state on the field, yet they faltered to a 6-5 record and early playoff exit. Much of this was due to a lack of a physical presence from a young D. This season, much of that young defense returns intact giving the Cougars a chance to compete with the Wolves and Bruins of the world. Highlighting the stouter 2012 D are junior linebackers Cameron Currington and Kaleb Barum as well as defensive back Evan White.

Around the Conference: Xavier Lewis, one of Colorado's top defenders, highlights a very experienced senior class for Eaglecrest. It would be nice to see this crew compete with the top of the conference. Overland never lacks for talented skill players but recent coaching instability has hurt them. Hopefully new HC Seth Replogle can move the Blazers forward. Smoky Hill has the potential to put up some points due to the big play capability of quarterback Trent Clay and running back Joey Tuggle, but if the Buffaloes can't make stops and continue to give up the 33 points a game allowed last season, they will not be relevant in the Creek Conference.

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