Preseason Division-6 Preview

2011- early look at the 8 man football league in Arizona

1. Joe City: In one word Remington. Remington Baldwin is one of the most talented small school running back I have ever seen, he comes into his senior year with two state championships under his belt. Not to mention they have the most successful 8 man coach on the sidelines (John Bryant). Until someone beats them they have to be number 1.

2. Valley Union: Coach Lu is a hard nose grind it out coach who demands the most from his players (trust me on that) senior Jace Luzania will be moving from fullback to running back were he should have great successes.

3. Mogollon: Tradition is here and alive. Yeah they graduated a ton but Boone Baker has proven to be an elite back that can expose a defense on any given play. A bad year for Mogollon is losing in the Semi Finals so no way they can be lower than 4.

4. St. David: The Tigers saw their 2010 title dreams slip away after blowing a huge lead to eventual state champ Joseph City last season. Although St. David graduated a lot of talent off that team, they return senior quarterback Tyler Davis who will be in a league of his own in 2011.

5. Mayer: This looks to be the Wildcats most seasoned team since they won state in 2006. They return most of their starters from a team that lost to Bagdad in last year's quarterfinals. Senior running back David Atkerson looks to duplicate his 2000 yard rushing season he had in 2010.

6. Valley Lutheran: This is the year I believe Coach Wolf and the Flames have been building for. A combination of GREAT coaching and solid athletes (Dmitri O'Brien is arguably one of the best returning RB in DIV 6) I think they could be a top 4 team by seasons end.

7. Pima: Traditional 8-man powerhouse Pima returns to the 8-man game in 2011 after a short stint playing up in the 11 man game. Pima returns some very talented players from a team that had a respectable year in 2A in 2010. The Roughriders will have a new head coach this season. His name escapes me but I hear there are connections to Coach Bryant in Joe City (formally of Pima).

8. Bagdad: Graduated 9 seniors most of whom were 3-4 year starters RB Jonny Irwin transfers to parker for his senior year (it is where he grew up and Father still lives). 6'3" 290 OL/DL Isaih Chaves transfered to Morenci. But Bagdad will have one of the most talented young teams in the state. Look for them to have a good season and with some growth who knows come play off time.

9. Superior: This could finally be the Panthers year to make some noise. This class of seniors are very seasoned and talented. Many have been varsity starters since their freshman and sophomore years. Coach Ryan Palmer will look to QB Martin Granillo to once again lead a potent passing attack.

10. Duncan: The Wildkats now have a very respectable and stable program as head coach Eldon Merrell returns for his 3rd season. Merrell's son Cade (I believe please correct if wrong) had a great season as a freshman and will be a top player in 1A for the next 3 years.

Sleeper: Ray going from being a goldfish in the ocean to a northern pike in a bathtub numbers in div 6 is huge most of the time.

Dark Horse: Joy Christian

24-7 Football Top Stories