LoganFootball.com Scouting Report: St. Francis DeSales
COLUMBUS — While the St. Francis DeSales Stallions haven’t changed their style of play in the nearly 30 seasons since Logan first met them in 1987, preparation may be the biggest challenge for the Chieftains this week.
The Purple and White Stallions continue to run a triple-option offense built around strong, athletic line play and intelligent quarterbacks distributing to excellent running backs.
It’s a recipe that has seen the northern Columbus Catholic school win three state championships, finish as runner-up five times and win 10 regional championships while winning 50 playoff games in 23 playoff appearances.
And while every DeSales team boasts talent, the 2015 edition — which includes two players already verbally committed to Big Ten schools — may be their best since finishing as the DIII state runner-up in 2009.
The backfield is led by quarterback Dylan Todd (6-1, 170, junior), who has rushed for 336 yards and five touchdowns on 45 carries. The junior has to make the right reads and decisions on when to pitch and when to keep on the option. He has also completed 11-of-21 passes for 236 yards with four touchdowns and two interceptions.
Austin Andrews (6-0, 180, senior) is the first of two Big Ten verbal commits. The Michigan State verbal commit has missed the last few weeks with a knee injury, but is expected to be available for Coach Ryan Wiggins this Friday. Andrews has rushed 61 times for 378 yards with five touchdowns.
Alonzo Booth (6-0, 235, junior) has filled in for Andrews and then some. The bruising runner is averaging nearly eight yards per carry (68 carries, 543 yards) and leads the team with six touchdowns. Jake Gilmore (5-8, 180, senior) is the fullback, adding 263 yards and four touchdowns on 65 carries.
Ryan Corkrean (6-2, 210, junior), Patrick Moriarty (6-2, 235, junior), Luke Barber (6-1, 210, junior), and Ty Smith (5-11, 210, senior) will all see time at tight end and are excellent blockers. Corkrean leads the team in receiving with four catches for 98 yards and one touchdown.
Chris McNally (6-0, 160, junior), Shawn Snyder (6-1, 185, senior), and Joe Arnold (5-9, 150, junior) will all rotate at wide receiver. Joe Arnold leads the receivers with three catches for 90 yards with two scores.
The Stallion forward wall is led by Wisconsin-bound junior tackle Derrius Mullins (6-5, 315). The guards are Danny Barren (6-2, 240, senior) and Omar Vargas (5-11, 220, junior) with Nick Carter (6-0, 320, senior). Drew McLuckie (6-3, 210, junior) is the tackle opposite Mullins.
As tough of a challenge as the DeSales triple-option offense presents, its defense may be even more of a challenge. The Stallions are allowing only 3.9 yards per rush and five yards per pass attempt. They are holding opponents to 14 points per game and 240 yards of offense.
McLuckie and Barber are the ends with Mullins and Mason Saunders (6-0, 215, senior) playing inside at defensive tackle. Mullins leads the team with 36 tackles (11 for loss) from his tackle spot.
Corkrean leads an excellent linebacker unit. Ty Van Fossen (6-0, 175, sophomore) lines up with Corkrean inside while Elijah Jones (5-11, 170, senior) plays the outside linebacker spot.
DeSales will be aggressive on defense, trying to confuse the opposing offense with different stunts and blitzes from all over the field.
Andrews and Darren Hankins (5-11, 170, senior) are the cornerbacks with Snyder and Drake Yinger (5-11, 170, senior) are the safeties.
Dominic DiMaccio (5-8, 150, junior) does the kicking. He has converted 26-of-27 PATs and three-of-five field goals, and over half of his kickoffs have resulted in touchbacks. Andrews is a dangerous kick returner for the purple and white.
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Logan football historian Spencer Waugh of loganfootball.com previews the Chiefs’ opponent every Thursday in The Logan Daily News.