“We've got to put last year in the rearview mirror, and we've got to go to work to get ready for that Week 1 and try to win. Whatever happens out of Week 1, we've got to go to Week 2. That's how you are successful. You can't look back, and you can't look forward.”
- Jamey DuBose, Central head coach
The bad news for the Central Red Devils is they graduated some big stars from their state-championship team. The good news is when you’re Central, you don’t rebuild — you reload.
Gone from last year’s title team are quarterback Peter Parrish and running back A’Montae Spivey, who are now at LSU and Arkansas, respectively. Luckily for Central, the team has plenty of studs remaining in quarterback Tucker Melton, running back Joseph McKay, wide receiver E.J. Williams and offensive tackles Javion Cohen and Joshua Jones, just to name a few.
Melton split time with Parrish in 2018 and at times outplayed the four-star dual threat. Now, it’s Melton’s offense to run, and the Bowling Green commit has the complete confidence of his teammates.
“He's going to surprise a lot of people,” Cohen said of Melton. “Tucker is a definite leader. He has a prolific arm. He's a great person all around. He's very underrated being that he was behind Peter, but I think people will notice this year that Tucker is most definitely a system quarterback. He can run any offense you want him to.”
Williams has proven he’s the next big Central receiver, but don’t overlook McKay as the Red Devils’ next running back. The junior has been taking big snaps since his freshman year, and getting to start will likely allow him to truly show out.
Central head coach Jamey DuBose circled the Red Devils’ secondary as a group that had the most to prove in 2019.
Central graduated the bulk of their defensive backs from 2018, with three-star safety Mike Harris being the lone holdover. DuBose didn’t hesitate when saying how important Harris would be and said he will likely play some at corner as well.
DuBose said competition in the secondary is ongoing but said Spencer (GA) transfer Terrell Gordon and Ty Quaze Mayo will likely fill roles there in the fall.
The Red Devils return Jadon Richardson and P.J. Ramsey to their linebacking corps, and DuBose anticipates Chase Alexander and Billy Keyt to play key roles in well. Central’s most experience on defense is at defensive line with Vontavious Maddox and B.J. Randolph being joined by Ralen Robinson and Byron Jenkins.
“I'm excited about our offensive unit. I think that's going to be the strength of our team while our defense catches up a little bit because of our loss at the linebacker and secondary position,” DuBose said.