Team Preview: Chabot College

2007 was a bit of a disappointment for Chabot head coach Danny Calcagno, but he and his staff have high hopes for the 2008 season. The Gladiators have some talent on both sides of the ball, but they are loaded with talented linebackers and they've got some size along the offensive line. spoke with Calcagno recently and he gave us a run-down of what to look for this season...

"We're excited about 2008 after we had a kind of disappointing season last year," Calcagno told recently. "We have some good and experienced players returning on the defensive side of the ball and we have some really good young guys that have come in so we think this year could be pretty good for us.

"e're fired up with the kids' attitudes and we've had a good turnout for weights and we had a really good spring and the summer is going really well, so we're excited to get it going."

Below are the players to keep an eye on this fall...

OT/OG Sifa Etu - He's a solid kid with a great work ethic. He's never missed a day of weights, he's got a 3.3 GPA and he's a very good offensive tackle with great feet and he's really strong. He can also move inside, but he'll play outside for us.

"He played on defense and then we switched him so he's got some ‘sick'em' and he'll get after it and he leads what will probably be one of our stronger positions which is the line. He's more of a technician who has great technique."

OG Jovan Williams"He's probably got more ‘sick'em' than Sifa and he likes to maul his opponent, but he's got a great work ethic too and he's almost identical size-wise to Sifa. He plays guard for us and he's super-strong and he just gets after it."

WR Nick Blunt "He's very athletic and he's a great player. He's got to get it done in the classroom which he's been working on, but he's a solid player who has enough speed to hurt teams, but he's better at catching it and running with it in the open field."

RB Brandon Thompson "He was a kid who stood out for us last year. He ran for 850 yards in seven games, so he's a 1,000 yard rusher for us. The knock on him is his size. He's only about 170 or 175 pounds, but he's a strong, athletic kid. He runs like he's a 220-pounder.

"We want to do some different things with him this year, especially as a receiver out of the backfield because he's such a good receiver. We're really excited about the year we think Brandon is going to have."

WR Roy Polk "Roy is having a great summer right now. He had a bit of a knee injury in the spring and he's bounced back and he's working really hard this summer. He's a lot like Nick in that he's athletic and can make plays down the field and he's got very, very good hands."

DT Sipili Tuigamala "He's returning and his size and speed are the best things for him. He's 6-2, 310 and if there is any sort of negative about him it's his work ethic and that's something we've been working on him to improve on. He's a bit lazy sometimes, but when he shows up and he's going 100% he's a guy who can play at the next level and he could play either the one or three-tech.

"He's a guy who has relied on his natural talent. He's naturally strong and that's why he hasn't worked as hard. It's scary what he could be like if he would work just a little bit harder."

LB Lance Harrison-Brown "He's a kid with a great work ethic and he's going to play the outside for us. He runs well, he's strong and he's pretty instinctual. He just transferred in to us from a JC in Arizona and we really like what we've seen from him so far."

LB Daryl Pasut "He's coming off of a shoulder injury that causes him to sit out all of last year so he's ready to go. He's had the surgery and he's been doing well, he's going to play our MIK backer, but he could play outside too. With his size (6-2, 240) he could play almost anywhere, but he'll be inside for us.

"He'll be a two for two guy unless he gets a medical redshirt."

LB Gideon Silafau "He's real athletic and he's going to be playing one of those outside linebacker spots. Gideon came to us from the islands and he played running back for us last year for the first half of the season and then we moved him to linebacker for the second half of the season, but this year we moved him to the defensive side and we're pretty excited about what he brings to our defense. He's strong and he's a hitter."

LB Tony Quilici "He's got the same thing as Daryl. He injured his foot and missed the whole season and sat the year out so he's going to play his third year here. He's really athletic and he can really run.

"Like Daryl, he'll be a two for two guy unless he gets a medical redshirt."

S Elmer Titania "He comes from the same island as Gideon. He's a very athletic kid who runs really well. He's going to be competing at a safety spot because there's a kid that came to us in the spring by the name of Jesse Walls, who came from Sierra College and he's a really good one so those two will be battling it out."

CB/S Tiquan Payne "He's one of our team captains and a stud player. We expect some good things from Tiquan. He's going to play strong safety for us and he just makes plays. He could play corner, but I think he's probably better suited as a cover-two corner who can be more physical with guys."

Other Chabot players to watch: WR Mike Parker; CB Anthony Ragsdale (D-2, clock); DE Terrill Vinson; DE Chris Coatney; DE Cyle Coatney.

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