FORT BEND---Dulles broke out of a three year losing slump two years ago, finishing out the regular season with an 8-2 record before losing to Pearland in the opening round of the playoffs. But last year the squad fell back on hard times, falling on its face with a 2-8 record overall and a 1-7 loop log.
The Vikings had last made the playoffs in 2002 before falling on hard times, finishing out the next three campaigns with records of 3-7.1-9 and 4-5. And then in 2006 Coach Jim Creech's Vikings turned the corner with a 6-2 district log. Last year things did not work out so well as the victory roof came tumbling down. To make matters worse, gone from last year's team is all-everything wide receiver Daryl Stonum, the super swift pass grabber who was good enough to land himself a full scholarship from Big 10 powerhouse Michigan.
With Stonum now going out for passes for the Wolverines at the Big House, the Vikings will try to regain the playoff thing as eight starters and 14 lettermen return, including a pair of outstanding halfbacks in Charles Mouton (5-8, 185, 4.4) and Arthur Smith, a 6-2, 215 bruiser with 4.6 speed. Last year the swift Mouton galloped for 606 yards afoot and also became one of the squad's most sure handed receivers.
While the Mouton-Smith combo should be one of the best in district 23-5A, the Vikings are hoping a solid group of underclassman can help turn the program back around in the right direction.
One of those youngsters is sophomore defensive back Sheroid Evans, a dandy 6-1, 175-pounder with 4.4 speed who could well be a future blue-chipper. Evans will man a spot in a talented defensive backfield that will include the likes of Jason Merritt and Zach McMillian. Defensive end Alex Wacker and hard hitting linebacker Kent Raulston return to cement the Viking defense. Linebacker Josh Irick, a 5-10, 190-pound thumper with 4.6 speed, should also be a mainstay this year for the Dulles defense.
On offense the Vikings should have a decent offensive line to block for the speedy backfield, while tight end Cody Carter plans to give the home town quarterback a big target. Dulles gets its first taste of regular season action on Sept. 4 when the Vikings travel over to Katy Seven Lakes to do battle.