League: Division I Southeast
Head coach: Marty Redmond, 11th season (63-47)
2014 record: 5-5 (3-1 Southeast, second)
Returning starters: Four offense, four defense
Base offensive set: Spread
Base defensive set: 3-4
Top offensive players: QB Devon Mueller (Sr.); WR Devin Smith (Sr.); RB Justice Jackson (Sr.); WR Brandon Hargis (Jr.)
Top defensive players: S Sean Hamilton (Sr.); LB Justin Dunlap (Jr.); CB Devin Smith (Sr.); LB Jose Valenzuela (Sr.)
Key losses: WR/DB Aedan Bartolowits; RB/LB Bobby Merritt; LB Josh Ozuna; LB Te’Vion Reed
Outlook: Redmond expects offense to be the team’s strength, led by returning quarterback Mueller and what the coach calls a “large offensive line that anchors the team.”
Mueller earned second-team All-Southeast League honors as a junior after passing for 1,366 yards and 18 touchdowns. He threw seven interceptions.
The Falcons will have to replace their top four receivers, including Bartolowits, who led the team with 31 catches for 504 yards and seven TDs. But Redmond expects Smith and Hargis to be strong threats in the passing game.
Jackson is back at running back and will look to improve on a junior season in which he led the team in rushing with 691 yards and eight TDs.
On defense, Foothill has more holes to fill. Bartolowits, who had five interceptions, was a first-team all-league safety. Ozuna (104 tackles) and Reed (134 tackles, six sacks) also made the league’s first team and were Foothill’s top two tacklers.
Redmond said Valenzuela and Dunlap will be key in stopping the run, and Smith and Hamilton lend experience to the defense.
“Although the defense is young, they are much more athletic than in years past,” Redmond said.