FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – The Summit Athletic Conference produced two of last year’s six state champions.
Bishop Dwenger (4A)
Head Coach: Chris Svarczkopf (14th season)
2015 Record: 14-1
The reigning 4A state champs and SAC champs are back looking to repeat in their success in 2015. Back at the helm is Head Coach Chris Svarczkopf who missed the entire 2015 season while battling lymphoma. Ernie Bojrab, who took over as interim head coach, has since retired from coaching. Dwenger was bitten by the graduation bug this year. The Saints lost 32 seniors including 17 starters and their entire offensive line. Dwenger does return key position players like senior quarterback Blake Podschlne, senior running back Amaun Clark, and senior fullback Peter Winkeljohn. Clark could miss the first games of the season after fracturing his right ankle over the summer. On defense Dwenger returns defensive lineman Frank Yanko and Winkeljohn at linebacker.
Bishop Luers (3A)
Head Coach: Kyle Lindsey (4th season)
2015 Record: 8-4
The Knights saw their season end at the hands of Bellmont in the sectional championship. Luers loses All-SAC wide receiver Austin Mack who will be suiting up for Ohio State. Looking to fill his shoes is DaShon Bussell. The junior wideout will be catching passes from transfer Arion Nieves who comes to Luers from North Side. The Knights also return running back J’Lyn Charlton who rushed in 12 touchdowns last year.
Head Coach: Doug Dinan (7th season)
2015 Record: 7-4
Carroll lost several key pieces of their 2015 team including quarterback Aidan Smith who is now at Northwestern. The Chargers will also be without linebackers Dylan Connor, is now at Ohio, and Gavin Pelkington, receivers Cody Dinan and Hayden Nieuwlandt, lineman James Jamicich, and defensive backs Jack Givens and Blake Schumacher. The Chargers have narrowed their quarterback search to senior Ian Miller and junior Jack Miguel. Whoever takes over will have veteran receivers Jordan Schmeling and Justin Becker to throw to. Defensively several of their lineman will return for the 2016 season.
Concordia Lutheran (3A)
Head Coach: Tim Mannigel (7th season)
2015 Record: 5-6
The Cadets are looking to return to their winning ways despite losing several key pieces. Concordia will be without All-SAC quarterback Daniel Sparks but will return 2015 Fab 15 honoree Peterson Kerlegrand in the backfield. Kerlegrand led the Cadets with 1,320 yards and 17 touchdowns.
Head Coach: Chad Zolman (13th season)
2015 Record: 8-4
Homestead’s first season was a successful one. The Spartans beat rival Carroll in the sectional championship game. Although they lost tight end Ben Skowronek who is now playing ball at Northewstern, and wideout Austin Krider, the Spartans will have quarterback Drew Kezei back. The recent Ohio commit won all-state honors in 2015 throwing for 2,700 yards and 30 touchdowns. Homestead also has linebacker Moses Giradot back and defensive back Matt Anderson, who is receiving offers from Division 1 programs like Army and Air Force.
North Side (5A)
Head Coach: Mike Cochran (1st season)*
2015 Record: 4-6
It will be an all new North Side team taking the field this season. The newly named Legends will have first year head coach Mike Cochran leading the way. North Side also lost several key pieces like Logan Capps and Arion Nieves who transferred to Luers this offseason. The Legends do return veteran running back Montrail Moore.
Head Coach: Jason Doerffler (3rd season)
2015 Record: 2-8
The Bruins are searching for their third winning season since 1999 after picking up two wins in 2015. Back at quarterback is senior Garrett Schoenle who is getting baseball offers from schools like IU and Ball State. Schoenle does lose his two fellow baseball teammates Mike Snydeer and Jordan Dickinson.
Head Coach: Kurt Tippmann (8th season)
2015 Record 13-1
Snider is coming off one of the most exciting state championship games in IHSAA history defeating New Palestine 64-61 thanks to a last second touchdown ran in by Isaac Stiebeling. Now Stiebeling is at Eastern Michigan and several key factors in the Panthers state championship have graduated as well like recievers Malik Bramley, David Turner, and running back Dominick Scott. Snider’s offense does have receiver and punt returner Mac Hippenhammer back. The 2015 Fab 15 honoree has narrowed his college decision to five schools, Michigan State, Penn State, Iowa, Wake Forest and Indiana. Also back is running back Money Woods. Keep your eye out for Snider’s defense loaded with experience this season.
South Side (4A)
Head Coach: Roosevelt Norfleet (2nd season)
2015 Record: 2-9
Roosevelt Norfleet is hoping his second season sees more wins than his first. The Archers lost 18 seniors from last year’s squad that averaged 12 points per game. Back to lead the offense is quarterback Dennis Johnson Jr.
Head Coach: Derrick Moore (2nd season)
2015 Record: 0-10
There is no where to go but up for Derrick Moore in his second season at Wayne. After finishing 9-2 in 2014 the Generals did not win a game in 2015. The Generals will be without lineman Auston Robertson who is now at Michigan State. Robertson did not play most of last season due to disciplinary issues.