WALWORTH COUNTY SUNDAY -- They may have a new leader, but the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater remains the team that everybody in NCAA Division III football is hunting.
The Warhawks won their second straight and sixth national championship in eight years last December. And they start their 2015 campaign on Sept. 12 at Belhaven, Mississippi, with college football’s longest winning streak at 32 games. They are ranked in the top three of three preseason polls, including No. 1 by D3football.com.
UW-Whitewater must replace such standouts as quarterback Matt Behrendt, wide receivers Jake Kumerow and Justin Howard, defensive back Brady Grayvold, defensive back and Delavan-Darien alum Marcus McLin and defensive lineman Mykaell Bratchett.
Brian Zimmerman and Chad Smith were expected to be on the sidelines Friday as Hononegah High School kicks off its 2015 football season against Freeport.
Zimmerman and Smith were named interim head coaches last week ago after long-time head coach Tim Sughroue, 48, turned himself in to the Winnebago County Sheriff's office after being indicted on charges of possession of hydrocodone.
WALWORTH COUNTY SUNDAY -- Ethan Cesarz has room to grow physically and in his knowledge of the game, sobering thoughts for opposing football coaches in the Southern Lakes Conference.
The Delavan-Darien High School standout measures 6-foot-1 and 215 pounds, and he started his junior season Friday night when the Comets hosted East Troy in a nonconference contest.
The excitement is obvious in second-year DDHS coach Bret St. Arnauld’s voice when talking about No. 18, who was selected to the league’s first team at tight end and the second team at linebacker last fall.
STATELINE NEWS -- Adjustments are part of life and football in transitioning from high school to college, especially for a quarterback.
However, 2013 Milton High School graduate Evan Phillips said he has enjoyed an advantage that many other athletes don’t.
“Beloit was an ideal situation for me because we run basically the same system that we did during my junior and senior years at Milton,” said Phillips, who earned honorable mention status both years in the tough Badger South Conference. “We use a lot of the same passing concepts and a lot of the same play calls, and the way the quarterback runs the offense is similar. So, you could say this is my fifth year in this offense. And I didn’t know it until I got here, but Matt Lee, who was my offensive coordinator in high school, is our running backs coach.”
Another Wisconsin high school football season is upon us, with the bulk of teams across the Badger State kicking off Friday night.
That’s the case with every Stateline area squad, except for Williams Bay, which is scheduled to open Saturday.
Here is a rundown of Week One’s match-ups, most of them nonconference affairs except for Janesville Parker and Janesville Craig starting Big Eight competition.
Friday, Aug. 21
Beloit Turner at University School (NC)
Derek Diehl inherits a Turner program that has not won more than two games since 2008, and the former Williams Bay coach is hoping that senior quarterback Seth Smith and the Trojans’ offense can reach double figures more than three times like last year.