East quarterback Dominic Webb had 1,719 passing yards in 2014, the seventh-best total in City League history.
But Webb graduated and coach Bill Coffman was hired in the spring, so will the Aces produce such a prolific passing team again?
“I didn’t want to totally change the offense,” said Coffman, who was an East assistant for eight seasons. “We’ll be in virtually the same offense, but there will be a different emphasis. It’s not because of me, but because of what we can do.”
And what Coffman sees is a team that can run.
Coffman also has four running backs in sophomore Javon Givens and juniors Wesley Jones, Jordan Givens and Quintrell Royal.
“They’re all just a little bit different. (Jones and Jordan Givens) are a bit smaller but have great feet and good quickness,” said Coffman, who previously coached Rose Hill and Andover. “Quintrell and Javon are a little bigger, stronger but still have very good speed.”
If Coffman chooses to throw, there are two possible quarterbacks in senior Ethan Anderson and junior Greg Sousa, along with experienced receivers in Xavier Brown, Christian Terrell and Carletos Amaro.
“Ethan makes great decisions and throws the ball well,” Coffman said. “Another young man that is a little faster and can run from quarterback position is Sousa. Right now, as far as a who’s the starter, that’s still a competition.”
The defense will be strong, especially with senior defensive end Xavier Kelly, who has made a non-binding commitment to play at Clemson, and defensive back Canien Burnett, who has outstanding speed.
“I think our defense has a chance to be great,” Burnett said. “We have some good linebackers and defensive linemen. We’re young in the secondary, but it will be my job to be a leader as the only returning starter.”
Terrell, David Ward and Jones will also see time in the secondary. Royal moves from inside linebacker to the outside.
East will be tested quickly. The Aces open with Kapaun Mount Carmel, Bishop Carroll and West — all 2014 playoff teams.
“We will find out a whole lot about ourselves right off the bat,” Coffman said.