There’s one big problem standing in the way of Maize South defending its AV-CTL II title.
Or, if you want to get technical, one problem with 10 moving parts.
Something along the lines of an entire defense that needs to be replaced, including four all-league players.
“We lose more players on defense than we ever have in the past,” Maize South coach Brent Pfeifer said. “There will be a lot of experience to replace, so time, effort and unselfish decisions will be very important for us to continue our success.”
The Mavericks already have the unselfish part down — star quarterback and reigning AV-CTL II offensive player of the year Korie Frausto has already said he will chip in at defensive back if needed.
“Whatever the team needs, I’ll do it,” Frausto said. “If that means playing a little defensive back, I can do that.”
What Maize South will need is another big year from senior A.J. Nardi, the lone returning starter. Nardi makes the move from defensive end to middle linebacker after racking up 81 tackles and seven sacks last season on the way to honorable-mention AV-CTL II honors.
“I still think we’ll be OK, because we had a lot of people who played last year and got good time,” Nardi said. “A lot of people who will be ready by the time the season starts. Yeah, there are 10 guys I got used to playing with last year, but this year there will be 10 new people.”
And positions that will be up for grabs in training camp.
“No spots guaranteed on defense, every spot is open,” Nardi said. “It doesn’t matter if you’re a freshman or if you’re a senior ... if you can get the job done, you’ll be out there.”