Team Preview: American River

American River's coaching staff and players have been hard at work trying to rebound from a disappointing 4-6 record and they are hoping some talented prospects on the defensive side of the ball will help keep them in games while the offensive side of the ball brings along some very talented, but youthful players. DB coach Josh Poteracke updated us on some of ARC's top prospects...

S Sam Cole "Sam is the heart of our defense. He is very intelligent and controls the style defense that we run. He was an All Mid-Empire selection at corner in 2006 and had a medical redshirt in 2007. His move to FS will allow the smartest player on the field to make all the calls. Don't let his size fool you, pound for pound he is the strongest player on the team and is very physical. He will be replacing All State safety Shane Scott."

CB Jay Reddic "Jay was an All Mid-Empire conference corner in 2007. He was tied for the team lead in interceptions (5) last season. He's another guy that his small stature does not indicate the way he plays. He has a lot of speed (4.3) and will be one to watch."

CB Jermaine Fox "He's a freshman, but we expect big things out of him. He came to us after deciding not to attend Weber State. He would like to test the waters this year and hope for a scholarship to a bigger division I school. He's got good size and good speed and we're excited about his potential."

S Willie Ross "He's another freshman who will have a big impact this fall. Willie has all the potential in the world. Size (5-11, 200) and speed (4.41) should make him a deadly threat in the secondary."

LB Kevin Lloyd "Kevin is the lone returning starter from last years linebackers. He's got great size, speed, and excellent feet. He's really instinctive too. He has gotten a lot of early interest from Pac-10 and some other D-1 schools."

LB Zack Feuerbach "Zack is making the move back to linebacker after having to spend the second half of last season as a backup quarterback due to injury. His off season training has really paid off as he has put on an extra 30 pounds and he's set to have a big season for us."

DE David Little "David is a returning All Mid-Empire defensive end. He has the ability to play with his hand in the dirt or on two feet out in space. He is one of the top pass rushers in the Mid-Empire conference and should have a stellar sophomore season."

DE Francis Ruiz "Francis is another guy that trained really hard this off season. Last year as a 215 pound defensive end he was a pass rushing machine. This year he has bulked up and gotten a lot faster. He should give opposing offensive tackles a hard time due to his size and speed."

WR Tommy Fratcher "Tommy had a great season as our emergency quarterback last year. He led us to wins in two of our last three games, throwing eight touchdowns and only one interception. He'll make the move back to wideout this season where we can use his athleticism and playmaking abilities to help us out on that side of the ball."

WR David Weld "David is lightning quick and he runs great routes and is very dangerous in the return game. He's small, but he's quick and he's got football speed."

RB Ricky Abernathy "Ricky returns to us after a year off of football. He has great size and speed and will be a huge upgrade for our run game. He's big and he's physical."

RB Stephon Ceasar - "Stephon was our leading rusher in 2006. After a season off he is even quicker. He has probably the fastest 0 to 60 acceleration I have ever coached. His elusiveness makes him a threat out of the backfield or in the slot. We'll use him in a number of different ways."

WR Josh Griffin "Great size and hands. Should be an impact player as a freshman."

G Adam Zari "He's a real bulldozer for us and he's going to be an impact guy for us up front as a freshman. He's got a really high football I.Q."

TE Harrison Wilfley – "He's 6-4, but he's got a seven-footer's wing span. He can block and catch. He's so athletic that we'll also play him in the slot."

K Ryan Williams "Ryan will focus on primarily kicking this year. Last year he played as a backup safety. He has a big time leg and he can hit field goals from 50-plus. He had a 70-percent touchback rating in high school. He had a pulled groin most of last season which limited his power. He should be one of the top kickers in northern California this season."

Some freshman American River players to watch: S Carlos Mikell; CB Dwayne Whitfield; S Julius Brumfield; CB Marquet Shumate; LB Ryan Scarr; LB Steve Halverson; LB Mike Willis; DT Clint Wilton; DT/NT Ed Agbigay.

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