1926 Leesburg Yellow Jackets Football Archives, Leesburg High 7, St. Cloud High, Friday, October 22, 1926, Cooke Field, Home of the JacketsCarver Heights Quarterback Club, Leesburg High School, Leesburg, Florida, Page 1, Friday, October 22, 1926, Leesburg High School, 1401 Yellow Jacket Way, Leesburg, Florida 34748, Gerald Lacey, Staff Writer, Carver Heights Quarterback Club
1926 Leesburg Yellow Jackets Football Archives, Leesburg High 7, St. Cloud High, Friday, October 22, 1926, Cooke Field, Home of the JacketsCarver Heights Quarterback Club, Leesburg High School, Leesburg, Florida, Page 1, Friday, October 22, 1926, Leesburg High School, 1401 Yellow Jacket Way, Leesburg, Florida 34748, Gerald Lacey, Staff Writer, Carver Heights Quarterback Club
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1926 Leesburg Yellow Jackets Football Archives, Leesburg High 7, St. Cloud High, Friday, October 22, 1926, Cooke Field, Home of the JacketsCarver Heights Quarterback Club, Leesburg High School, Leesburg, Florida, Page 1, Friday, October 22, 1926, Leesburg High School, 1401 Yellow Jacket Way, Leesburg, Florida 34748, Gerald Lacey, Staff Writer, Carver Heights Quarterback Club
1926 Leesburg Yellow Jackets Football Archives, Leesburg High 7, St. Cloud High, Friday, October 22, 1926, Cooke Field, Home of the JacketsCarver Heights Quarterback Club, Leesburg High School, Leesburg, Florida, Page 1, Friday, October 22, 1926, Leesburg High School, 1401 Yellow Jacket Way, Leesburg, Florida 34748, Gerald Lacey, Staff Writer, Carver Heights Quarterback Club
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Versatility Is New Trademark
Chalk Talk - Preps '92 - Lake
Multipurpose Players Highlight Lake County's Rosters This Fall As Coaches Deal With Depth Woes.
September 4, 1992|By Gary Graves of The Sentinel Staff
Orlando Sentinel
Updated: Wednesday, August 5, 2015, 2:28 p.m.

If Lake County football coaches assembled a ''Dream Team,'' the players chosen wouldn't necessarily
inspire a gridiron fantasy.

In high school, success sometimes is determined by the unsung - players who forsake the spotlight to
fill several needed roles or whose quiet toils go unnoticed by all but those involved. If such a thing was
possible, Mount Dora's Dwayne Copeland, Clermont's Brian Roehn, Tavares' Billy Keener, Eustis'
Oliver Longley and Leesburg's Steve Gooden - among others - merit strong consideration.

Their value centers less on ability than versatility, which could be the key for each program as another
football season gets underway. Given the dearth of depth throughout the county, success or failure
depends on how well coaches juggle rosters to offset injuries.

No coach or program is immune from this malady. Even though first-year Leesburg coach Ed Hoffman
retains much of the talented squad that finished in a three-way tie with Edgewater and Seminole in
Class AAAA, District 7 race (losing a tiebreaker to Edgewater), he conceded that at least ''four or five''
players might have to do double-duty for the Yellow Jackets to at least duplicate the 8-2 record.

''Without a doubt, that's the key to our season because we don't have the second-or third-teamers like
other schools,'' Hoffman said. the county's newest head coach.

Class AAAA-7

Distinguishing the philosophies of Hoffman and former coach Ken Weir (now at Stuart Martin County) is
difficult because they are so similar. In fact, the only initial question was about Hoffman's transition from
defensive coordinator to overall caretaker, a point he even conceded.

Fortunately for Leesburg, Hoffman's progression was eased through the authority and autonomy he
gave his assistant coaches, including new offensive coordinator John Cook, who worked under
Hoffman at Tampa Catholic and Gaither and defensive boss George Fuller.

That only bolsters the Yellow Jackets' experienced offense. They are strong at several skill positions,
highlighted in part by tight end Jason Nobles, running back Beau Young, and receivers Duane Foster
and Brian Rausch, seniors whose desire to win is so strong Hoffman jokes that his toughest job might
be keeping them under control.

He exercises less restraint with his backfield, which is wise considering Lake Sentinel Offensive Player
of the Year and 1,000-yard rusher Oran Singleton is back. The catalyst though is quarterback Gooden,
whose importance increases because opponents will key on Singleton. He did very well directing the
Yellow Jackets' I-bone offense last season, but has returned this season with a better knowledge and
reaction to defenses.

Class AAA-8

Although every coach in the district insists this season's race will be wide open, they always mention St.
Cloud along with their school as a favorite, which ought to tell you something.

Clermont has the size and talent to make a serious challenge, Mount Dora and Tavares could be
sleepers and Eustis could prove it's bigger than departed All-State running back Bayfus McCoy, but the
Bulldogs remain a step ahead because of senior tailback Eric Butler, who rushed for 1,764 yards and
13 touchdowns last season and is gunning for several school records.

Even if St. Cloud's offensive line doesn't have much varsity experience, the Bulldogs average 220
pounds (including 290-pound sophomore Brian Nash), which makes their wishbone hard to stop. The
defense isn't too bad, either.

Still, Clermont coach Bruce Kregloe believes his Highlanders could break through, mainly because
they're just as big. They're also stronger, experienced and confident, overshadowing the fact they have
only 27 players.

Linemen Todd Polk, Sean Bartoletti and Brian Blake, and linebacker Chad Morrison lead a unit whose
starting front seven averages 210 pounds. Many of them have at least two years' experience.

Besides more players, Eustis coach Kevin McClelland seeks a tailback at least half as good as McCoy,
whose loss is the Panthers' biggest obstacle toward defending their district crown. McClelland is
somewhat fortunate to have strong candidates in seniors Tavares Thomas and Longley, who showed
glimpses of his potential as a junior.

In retrospect, that could be the Panthers' saving grace. Although undersized, center Chuck Adcock
(5-feet-8, 140 pounds) and tackle Todd Rowley (6-0, 170) gives Eustis decent pulling potential.
Defensive back/running back Chauncey Nash, running back/linebacker Brian Alberson, and
quarterback hopefuls Maurice Hayes and Chessie Pyatt could be surprises in a season that might be
remembered more for the lack of one star than the emergence of his supporting cast.

Former understudies could help Mount Dora and Tavares overcome disappointing 1991 seasons and
make things interesting.

Like its basketball team, Mount Dora offsets size problems with physical ability. What has Hurricanes
coach Craig Cosden hopeful is how his veterans' strength and newcomers' speed seemed to have
rubbed off on each other.