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Belfry 2017
#1
Long way to go...

Belfry has some massive holes to fill but has a strong core to build around:

OFFENSIVE Starters Returning (3):
OT Justin Barker- Not the big bopper, but was consistently solid this season.

FB Derek Wellman- Plain and simple a superstar as evidence by his State Finals performance

HB Taveon Hunter- Was superb down the stretch and will be one of the better big play backs in the State

OFFENSIVE KEY RETURNEES:
SE Ryan Jessie- Essentially played 50/50 at SE

TE Braxton Miller- Played in most double tight sets

C Dagen Rash- Should be able to step right in. Started several games when Preece was hurt and did well.

OT Austin Lawson- Probably the most critical. The kid has a chance to be special and at 6'5 335 is the best possible scenario when you lose Austin Dotson

QB Avery Browning- Browning runs the Offense well and has started a handful of games the past two years

RB Peyton Hensley- The superb Freshman was brilliant in a reserve role and will either be asked to move to the starting HB spot or split carries with Wellman at FB





DEFENSIVE starters returning (6):
DE Grayson Cook- Cook was outstanding as a Freshman.Love his potential.

LB Austin Fields- One of the most pleasant surprises was how he developed from being seen as a liability to a very solid LB

LB Derek Wellman- Best LB in EKY and one of the best in the State

NG Chase Runyon- Does a very good job and will have to help anchor the LOS.

CB Devin Varney- Can be a gamechanger

CB Taveon Hunter- May see his role on Defense decrease as his role on offense increases

DEFENSIVE Key Returnees:
S Justin Adkins- Was the starter until he was lost for the season with an injury. Will be a welcome addition for sure.

DE Josh Keathley- Might see him move to Dove's DT spot, undersized by quick and played well when he saw action with the Varsity

S Ben Bentley- With Browning possibly at QB you could see Bentley take over at a Safety spot, hard not seeing this kid get on the field somewhere

CB Isaiah Birchfield- I am really high on this Freshman and think he can be a big time help if he puts in the work.

DT Jacob Baisden- You don't replace Ray Horton, but Belfry couldn't ask for a better Freshman in the pipeline than this razor sharp kid with great feet

Other Newcomers:
LB Seth Mounts- Remember the name. He has all the tools to be one of the best Freshman players in all of KY.

OL Ethan Wolford- Have heard nothing but positive's about this current Freshman and some think he may challenge for a starting Guard spot
#2
The Good:
Belfry's backfield is going to be sick. The thought of Hensley moving to HB and being joined by Taveon and Wellman, with Adkins, Bentley, and Varney getting carries will be a scary thought for 3A.

Belfry has a great core back on Defense and will be very solid at the DE/LB spot. With Adkins back the secondary shouldn't see a big drop as well.

All these Belfry blowouts meant lots of playing time for the young guys and they excelled. Also this current Junior, Soph, and Fresh classes allwon Middle School Titles so the talent is definitely there.


The Bad:
One does not simply replace 3 D-1 Offensive Linemen. Dotson and Bentley may be the two best linemen in Belfry History, there will be a dropoff

Ray Horton is an all-timer at DT and Chase Dove and Bentley made this DLine sick. Belfry will have a major hole to fill on the Dline

Browning runs the Offense well but Corbett was a smooth customer and a threat with his feet. Part of what made Belfry so tough to defend was the fact all four running threats could take it to the house every play.

THE UGLY

Losing Austin Woolum means losing an all-around solid player on Offense and Defense, but more importantly losing one of the most reliable kickers in KY. Cook did an admirable job but Woolum will be a big loss on every side of the ball

Much like Woolum, Cameron Catron was an all-around star in every aspect and made countless big plays. I dont see a single player who can step in and replace him, Belfry will need to achieve it by committee and it still may be too tough of a feat

Expectations are through the roof and the target gets even bigger for Belfry as they enter unprecedented realms. Belfry loses numerous 3 and 4 year starters and the rest of 3A should be up as LexCath, Corbin, Boyle, and Central all had very young teams. These guys will have to hit the ground running as Haywood will schedule hard and every 3A team will be gunning hard for the 4 time champs.
#3
Schedule?
#4
Strikeout King Wrote:Schedule?

Nothing finalized.

Huntington, WV in the Pike County Bowl will be a big time test

I heard Knoxville Catholic is interested in renewing and they will be loaded again

Johnson Central and Pikeville most likely will be on there

Lawrence County, Pike Central, and the new Floyd County school in the district.

The other 3 games are TBD... I know Harlan County is off and would presume NewCath will be off. The Cleveland team was an one year deal. Haven't heard about Cabell Midland
#5
EKUAlum05 Wrote:Nothing finalized.

Huntington, WV in the Pike County Bowl will be a big time test

I heard Knoxville Catholic is interested in renewing and they will be loaded again

Johnson Central and Pikeville most likely will be on there

Lawrence County, Pike Central, and the new Floyd County school in the district.

The other 3 games are TBD... I know Harlan County is off and would presume NewCath will be off. The Cleveland team was an one year deal. Haven't heard about Cabell Midland

We will have Bryan Station to it will be away game no Cleveland next year but pretty sure Knox. Cath. and Cabell Midland is still a go I sure would like to throw Mingo on there lol but it won't happen
#6
EKUAlum05 Wrote:Nothing finalized.

Huntington, WV in the Pike County Bowl will be a big time test

I heard Knoxville Catholic is interested in renewing and they will be loaded again

Johnson Central and Pikeville most likely will be on there

Lawrence County, Pike Central, and the new Floyd County school in the district.

The other 3 games are TBD... I know Harlan County is off and would presume NewCath will be off. The Cleveland team was an one year deal. Haven't heard about Cabell Midland

Hey EKU I would love to hear what you think about and except to see from the 2017 bulldogs. We are very excited about our new coach. We took our fare share of lumps this season but I think we did pretty good with what we were up against. A lot of people don't realiz how young and inexperienced we were in just about every position including head coach. With only 5 seniors this was probably the youngest Bulldog team I can remember, but loosing well over 30 seniors in two seasons will do that to you. Our head coach is very young as head coaches go in his first season ever as the head man. We have a lot of talent on this team but they were just to young and inexperienced. We were in every game this year except the Belfry and Race land games. We have some really talented kids coming up through the ranks in the feeder schools the next few years also. I think coach Short absolutely understands how to build a strong program and understands things like building up the youth and middle school programs. He was a part of some of the best teams in this school's history and learned from the best coaches in our history. Next year we return pretty much everything and with a season under their belts and a year bigger stronger and faster I think all that youth getting a full season of playing and starting will pay off the next 2 or 3 years. I honestly believe this program is heading for a run something like we saw from 1990 to about 2003. Before we went on that over a decade run a lot of people said it couldn't be done at Lawrence County, they said we were to small and not enough talent. Funny how when you get a passionate coach and staff who are serious about winning and the kids love to play for that talent comes crawling out the woodworks ain't it. A lot of people said the same thing right before current Cable Midland coach Luke Salmon's took over as our head coach and magically the talent appeared again. I am very excited about the near future of Bulldog football.
#7
^^^

This past year LC was simply not as competitive as we have been accustomed to, mainly because of youth. I like their promise for sure and think Short is going about building the right way. The LC fanbase needs to stay patient and trust his process as it will take several years and a new unified focus at the feeder level.

I believe better days are ahead for LC and they will return to being a Top 10 team in the near future, but it is going to be a very tall task to line up toe to toe with Belfry the next three years. Belfry's current Freshman class is absolutely loaded and I am not sure Lawrence County has been able to compete or beat Belfry at the Middle School level in recent years. No shame in that, as only a couple teams have been able to compete.

LC just needs to worry about taking it a day at a time and controlling what they have in front of them and they will field a team that can at least battle Belfry. If Belfry drops to 2A, which seems more and more possible, this then puts LC in a prime spot to make a run.
#8
I am excited to see the backfield next year, Bentley and Hensley showed glimpses of future greatness this season.

Loosing the line and Ray hurts, but to me the two biggest hits are Catron and Woolum.

Since he was a freshman Austin Woolum has been consistent, even through the injuries he has had to deal with when he was on the field you knew he could make an impact. The hero of the 2013 game, the memorable hit on kick coverage against Lex Cath, covering, seems like he was always in position for a big reception or for a pick, he made such an impact in all three phases of the game that I think his versatility will be missed the most.

In Cameron Catron I feel like the team is loosing their spark plug. For what feels like at least 3 season Cameron has been the "grit" of the Pirates, he played with a passion and ferocity that you can't help but love to see in a football player, especially a Pirate. This team was full of mature players but I think that Cameron, to me felt like the heart of this team this year.

And there is were I think next years growing pains will lie, leadership, when Sani Warren and Hayden Hatfield graduated the team took some time to find its leader, but after a few weeks Keaton Taylor and TJ Dotson kinda stepped into those roles, for the past two years Cameron Catron had exemplified the heart of this team but this senior class has been so focused on a 4 peat that almost all of them have served in that role of a leader. The question is who fills that roll next year, who emerges as the field general who keeps his teammates calm under pressure and inspires them to give it their all on every play in every situation. Early eye tests point toward Wellman and Varney in my opinion, I guess time will tell.
#9
AtlPirateFan Wrote:I am excited to see the backfield next year, Bentley and Hensley showed glimpses of future greatness this season.

Loosing the line and Ray hurts, but to me the two biggest hits are Catron and Woolum.

Since he was a freshman Austin Woolum has been consistent, even through the injuries he has had to deal with when he was on the field you knew he could make an impact. The hero of the 2013 game, the memorable hit on kick coverage against Lex Cath, covering, seems like he was always in position for a big reception or for a pick, he made such an impact in all three phases of the game that I think his versatility will be missed the most.

In Cameron Catron I feel like the team is loosing their spark plug. For what feels like at least 3 season Cameron has been the "grit" of the Pirates, he played with a passion and ferocity that you can't help but love to see in a football player, especially a Pirate. This team was full of mature players but I think that Cameron, to me felt like the heart of this team this year.

And there is were I think next years growing pains will lie, leadership, when Sani Warren and Hayden Hatfield graduated the team took some time to find its leader, but after a few weeks Keaton Taylor and TJ Dotson kinda stepped into those roles, for the past two years Cameron Catron had exemplified the heart of this team but this senior class has been so focused on a 4 peat that almost all of them have served in that role of a leader. The question is who fills that roll next year, who emerges as the field general who keeps his teammates calm under pressure and inspires them to give it their all on every play in every situation. Early eye tests point toward Wellman and Varney in my opinion, I guess time will tell.

Wellman and Fields are verbal, passionate leaders. Varney is in his own way
#10
This is going to be my final post on BGR, after 10 seasons. It's been real! I will love to discuss the 2017 Pirates with anyone so just add me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter if you want to chat (even if you're not from Belfry), I'm always up to talk ball! God bless and Go Belfry.
#11
Belfry0304 Wrote:This is going to be my final post on BGR, after 10 seasons. It's been real! I will love to discuss the 2017 Pirates with anyone so just add me on Facebook or follow me on Twitter if you want to chat (even if you're not from Belfry), I'm always up to talk ball! God bless and Go Belfry.

Wooo now, where you going my man?:Sad04:
#12
EKUAlum05 Wrote:^^^

This past year LC was simply not as competitive as we have been accustomed to, mainly because of youth. I like their promise for sure and think Short is going about building the right way. The LC fanbase needs to stay patient and trust his process as it will take several years and a new unified focus at the feeder level.

I believe better days are ahead for LC and they will return to being a Top 10 team in the near future, but it is going to be a very tall task to line up toe to toe with Belfry the next three years. Belfry's current Freshman class is absolutely loaded and I am not sure Lawrence County has been able to compete or beat Belfry at the Middle School level in recent years. No shame in that, as only a couple teams have been able to compete.

LC just needs to worry about taking it a day at a time and controlling what they have in front of them and they will field a team that can at least battle Belfry. If Belfry drops to 2A, which seems more and more possible, this then puts LC in a prime spot to make a run.


I definitely agree with this assessment of LC. They struggled to compete with Belfry's past three MS classes. The current Junior, Soph and Freshmen class completely outmanned those teams that represented LC and Louisa. Not sure how competitive LC will be over the upcoming 2-3 seasons. Belfry is definitely losing a lot with this current Senior class.....but there is a lot sitting in the cupboard. Whether they can maintain the level of excellence remains to be seen. But.....when presented with their own opportunities in the past...they've won championships. It's no fluke that the current Junior, Soph and Freshman class all won Middle School State Championships. The program is bursting at the seams with talent.

No knock against LC. Believe Coach Short will get things going.....
#13
EKUAlum05 Wrote:Long way to go...

Belfry has some massive holes to fill but has a strong core to build around:

OFFENSIVE Starters Returning (3):
OT Justin Barker- Not the big bopper, but was consistently solid this season.

FB Derek Wellman- Plain and simple a superstar as evidence by his State Finals performance

HB Taveon Hunter- Was superb down the stretch and will be one of the better big play backs in the State

OFFENSIVE KEY RETURNEES:
SE Ryan Jessie- Essentially played 50/50 at SE

TE Braxton Miller- Played in most double tight sets

C Dagen Rash- Should be able to step right in. Started several games when Preece was hurt and did well.

OT Austin Lawson- Probably the most critical. The kid has a chance to be special and at 6'5 335 is the best possible scenario when you lose Austin Dotson

QB Avery Browning- Browning runs the Offense well and has started a handful of games the past two years

RB Peyton Hensley- The superb Freshman was brilliant in a reserve role and will either be asked to move to the starting HB spot or split carries with Wellman at FB





DEFENSIVE starters returning (6):
DE Grayson Cook- Cook was outstanding as a Freshman.Love his potential.

LB Austin Fields- One of the most pleasant surprises was how he developed from being seen as a liability to a very solid LB

LB Derek Wellman- Best LB in EKY and one of the best in the State

NG Chase Runyon- Does a very good job and will have to help anchor the LOS.

CB Devin Varney- Can be a gamechanger

CB Taveon Hunter- May see his role on Defense decrease as his role on offense increases

DEFENSIVE Key Returnees:
S Justin Adkins- Was the starter until he was lost for the season with an injury. Will be a welcome addition for sure.

DE Josh Keathley- Might see him move to Dove's DT spot, undersized by quick and played well when he saw action with the Varsity

S Ben Bentley- With Browning possibly at QB you could see Bentley take over at a Safety spot, hard not seeing this kid get on the field somewhere

CB Isaiah Birchfield- I am really high on this Freshman and think he can be a big time help if he puts in the work.

DT Jacob Baisden- You don't replace Ray Horton, but Belfry couldn't ask for a better Freshman in the pipeline than this razor sharp kid with great feet

Other Newcomers:
LB Seth Mounts- Remember the name. He has all the tools to be one of the best Freshman players in all of KY.

OL Ethan Wolford- Have heard nothing but positive's about this current Freshman and some think he may challenge for a starting Guard spot

It's definitely going to be interesting to see who steps in to really challenge for some of these spots that are going to open up. Some other potential names to follow: Offensively: Fullback-- (FR) Joe Chafin---hurt all season, OL- (Fr) Sean Cochran, (Soph) Logan Arbogast. Defensively: DL-- (FR)Jonathan Stepp and (Soph) Cameron Maynard, LB (Soph)Randall West--coming back off an injury, (FR) John Ashurst .

There are gonna be some battles come July and August.
#14
^^^
OJW,

Cameron Maynard from what I understand has left for Scott County after his parents had to get work up there. That's a pretty substantial loss, I was expecting him to contribute in some fashion in 2017. Scott County is getting a nice young athlete.
#15
EKUAlum05 Wrote:^^^

This past year LC was simply not as competitive as we have been accustomed to, mainly because of youth. I like their promise for sure and think Short is going about building the right way. The LC fanbase needs to stay patient and trust his process as it will take several years and a new unified focus at the feeder level.

I believe better days are ahead for LC and they will return to being a Top 10 team in the near future, but it is going to be a very tall task to line up toe to toe with Belfry the next three years. Belfry's current Freshman class is absolutely loaded and I am not sure Lawrence County has been able to compete or beat Belfry at the Middle School level in recent years. No shame in that, as only a couple teams have been able to compete.

LC just needs to worry about taking it a day at a time and controlling what they have in front of them and they will field a team that can at least battle Belfry. If Belfry drops to 2A, which seems more and more possible, this then puts LC in a prime spot to make a run.

I could be dead wrong but even if we have the numbers to drop Coach will stay in 3A better competition that's the same thing Russell did I don't think he'll move
#16
Hard to imagine there isn't some early growing pains to start next season of fun for Belfry even with the talent they are reloading with. It is going to be critical to see how the new members of the offensive and defensive lines gel. After losing the amount of unbelievable talent Belfry has had up front it will make winning the trenches early a big test. It's difficult not to expect another dominating season though with all the success the Pirates have had!
#17
Off this subject. But what can you guys tell me about Cabell Midland? Highlands is talking to them.
#18
bo67 Wrote:Off this subject. But what can you guys tell me about Cabell Midland? Highlands is talking to them.

Traditionally strong
This past year was a rebuild/reload season
Physical
Pro style offense

Schedule us instead of them, the drive would be similar.
#19
bo67 Wrote:Off this subject. But what can you guys tell me about Cabell Midland? Highlands is talking to them.

Largest school in WV

Two years ago they were loaded and would put you in mind of Simon Kenton with Coopers skill players

This year they had to reload and were more comparable to like a Conner and Cooper mix

They have a great RB that will be back that is going to be a stud

Let's make Belfry vs Highlands work though. Have the Birds call Belfry. Belfry will bring a better crowd
#20
EKUAlum05 Wrote:^^^
OJW,

Cameron Maynard from what I understand has left for Scott County after his parents had to get work up there. That's a pretty substantial loss, I was expecting him to contribute in some fashion in 2017. Scott County is getting a nice young athlete.


That's really unfortunate. Over the past two seasons....Belfry has definitely lost a few kids due to the current job/economic plight in the area. Hopefully that trend will be negated shortly.

Cameron is a good kid...and a nice player. A lot of kids in Scott Co...
good luck to the young man.
#21
EKUAlum05 Wrote:Largest school in WV

Two years ago they were loaded and would put you in mind of Simon Kenton with Coopers skill players

This year they had to reload and were more comparable to like a Conner and Cooper mix

They have a great RB that will be back that is going to be a stud

Let's make Belfry vs Highlands work though. Have the Birds call Belfry. Belfry will bring a better crowd

I would love to see this game, but I'm still saying this coming season is the year to make Belfry and Mingo Central happen. Champion vs Champion, it'll be like Hulk Hogan vs the Ultimate Warrior lol.
#22
OutlawJoseyWales Wrote:That's really unfortunate. Over the past two seasons....Belfry has definitely lost a few kids due to the current job/economic plight in the area. Hopefully that trend will be negated shortly.

Cameron is a good kid...and a nice player. A lot of kids in Scott Co...
good luck to the young man.

Correction, Henry Clay is where he is at
#23
I wish Highlands would get up with Mingo Central
#24
PondCreekToWestwood Wrote:I would love to see this game, but I'm still saying this coming season is the year to make Belfry and Mingo Central happen. Champion vs Champion, it'll be like Hulk Hogan vs the Ultimate Warrior lol.

It definitely sounds good but that's about it I watched them play it wouldn't be much of a game matter of fact it would be disappointing
#25
OutlawJoseyWales Wrote:That's really unfortunate. Over the past two seasons....Belfry has definitely lost a few kids due to the current job/economic plight in the area. Hopefully that trend will be negated shortly.

Cameron is a good kid...and a nice player. A lot of kids in Scott Co...
good luck to the young man.

What number was he I watched the JV I don't know which one he was
#26
Semi-State is at Belfry next year. I like their chances.
#27
BP2011 Wrote:I wish Highlands would get up with Mingo Central

For what a beat down I know Highlands was down the last couple of years but that's still a couple of levels ahead of WV 2A I went and watched them it wouldn't be much of a game
#28
Who all will belfry be playing next season or any idea
#29
coach28 Wrote:Who all will belfry be playing next season or any idea

Huntington High, Bryan Station, Johnson Central, I think we still have Cabell and Knoxville Cath. and our district games and will have Floyd Co. Central in our district there first year
#30
I think KnoxCath is out and Midland has different open dates than we do. Still a possibility though.

I heard Sheldon Clark is coming back into district play too.
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