Sandalwood at First Coast (Jacksonville) kicks off our video coverage – 8/16
This fall, we’ll be providing more coverage of Jacksonville area teams thanks to our partnership with the NFHS Network. Click here for more information about our expanded coverage.
Tonight at 7 p.m., we’ll have video coverage of the Kickoff Classic from Jacksonville between Sandalwood and First Coast. WATCH IT LIVE HERE.
Here is a preview of the game courtesy of DuvalSports.com:
First Coast Buccaneers
Coach: Marty Lee
Key Players: Ronnie Blakely (Sr., DB), Jamal Gelsey (Jr., LB), Cole Beckham (Sr., LB/TE), Davon Davis (Jr., DB/WR), Maaki Marshall (Sr., LB), Tyree Saunders (Jr., WR/DB), Christon Johnson (Jr., LB/RB), Shamas Rush (Sr., RB), Jacolby Evans (Sr., OL), Darius Lewis (Sr., RB), Jalen Leroy (Sr., DB/KR), Jordan Harmon (Jr., OL), Jordan Gray (Jr., OL), Isaac Sletton (Sr., C), Mike Smith (Jr., DB)
Newcomers: Jalen Fowler (Jr,, WR), Larry Edwards (Fr., QB), Jalen Evans (Jr., WR/QB), William Guyton (Sr., RB), Gelique Williams (Sr., CB), Jaylin Gaines (Sr., DB), (Chris Freeman (So., RB), Arden Luster (So., TE/QB/LB), Antonio Bell (Jr., DE)
Outlook: It’s been a while since First Coast has been relevant not since the days of Deandre Johnson, but that could change this year according to coaches. This could be the year they finally get back to the old days in the early 2000s when they were one of the most feared programs in the area. The Bucs finally have the talent to keep up with Lee, Columbia and Fletcher. New offensive coordinator Ben Ballard, a former Ribault player, is excited about the talent on offense with the addition of several transfers including Freeman from UC., Guyton from Lee, Fowler from Trinity and Evans from Lee to go along with a solid mix of homegrown kids including Saunders, Rush and Lewis. Defensively, the Bucs are solid as well with the return of seven starters including Blakely, Gelsey, Beckham, Marshall, Davis along with newcomers Bell from Trinity, Williams from Yulee, Gaines from Ribault.
Coach: Adam Geiss
Key Players: Antonio Clary (Sr., DB/WR), Jeff Sims (Jr., QB), Taylin Nails (Sr., WR), Jared Geis (Sr., WR), Kaloeb Parker (Sr., WR), Javonte Kinsey (Kr., WR), Adam Burns (Sr.,DB), Walter McKinnon (Sr., OL), Javonte Kinsap (Jr., WR), Branden Jennings (So., LB), Nick Brewer (So., RB), Brian Golden (Sr., RB)
Newcomers: Kyjuan Herndon (Jr., RB), Jaylon Wilson (Sr., DB)/WR), Kamari Stevens (Sr., OL/DL), Dylan Pate (Sr., ATH), Kingsley Equakun (Sr., OL/DL), Nathan Brady (Sr., DL/OL), Jahquez Robinson (Jr., DB), Matthew R vera (Jr., WR), Jeremiah Huntley (Fr., RB/ATH)
Outlook: A lot of high expectations for a program coming off a .500 season for the Saints, but a four game win streak to close the season plus a truckload of transfers has the Saints expecting big things this year. Offensively, the Saints returned eight starters from last year with Sims, Geis, Nails, Kinsey, Kinsap and Parker all back, but the addition of Herndon (Trinity), Pate (Trinity), Equakun (Atlantic Coast), Rivera (Parker) and Huntley (Matthew Gilbert) gives the Saints a lot of speed, power and much needed depth to wear down teams. Defensively nine starters are back led by Clary, a Virgina commit, as well as Burns, Sinclair and Jennings along with newcomers Wilson (Trinity), Brady (Atlantic Coast) and Robinson (Trinity).