Huron League preview: Carrabino back after big year

David Goricki
The Detroit News
Monroe St. Mary CC's Justin Carrabino

Predicted order of finish

(Consensus of coaches)

2014 record in parentheses

1. New Boston Huron (11-2, 6-1), 2. Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central (13-1, 7-0), 3. Milan (4-5, 3-4), 4. Riverview (6-4, 4-3), 5. Grosse Ile (7-3, 5-2), 6. Carleton Airport (4-5, 2-5), 7. Monroe Jefferson (2-7, 1-6), 8. Flat Rock (0-9, 0-7).

Top four players

1. MSMCC running back Justin Carrabino (5-7, 175) returns from the Division 6 state championship team. Carrabino rushed for 1,300 yards and 17 TDs, including 108 all-purpose yards in the 22-12 title game win to end Ithaca's 69-game winning streak.

2. Milan tailback/linebacker Cortez Gray (6-1, 190) is being recruited by Mid-American Conference schools after his 110-tackle season his junior year. Gray will be counted on to carry the load from his tailback position after the training camp injury of two-time 1,000-yard rusher Trace Lindeman.

3. New Boston Huron quarterback Matt Hartwick (5-10, 170) returns from last year's run, which included the school's first playoff win, then first district title, followed by its first regional championship before the magic ended with a Division 3 state semifinal loss to Orchard Lake St. Mary's. Hartwick accounted for more than 2,300 yards of offense, including 1,200 passing and 1,100 rushing.

4. MSMCC tight end/defensive end Riley Woolford (6-3, 265) was a two-way wrecking crew last season, displaying his ability as a strong blocking tight end while also making 36 tackles, including six for loss yardage.

Monroe St. Mary CC's Riley Woolford

Top four story lines

1. Jack Giarmo's last game as head coach of Monroe St. Mary Catholic Central couldn't have ended any better, with a Division 6 state championship following a 22-12 upset win over Ithaca. Adam Kipf moves from JV head coach to the head man of MSMCC. Giarmo finished with a 144-54 record in 17 years.

2. Milan coach Jesse Hoskins hopes the Big Reds can win a few games during the first four weeks while standout tailback Trace Lindeman is nursing his broken foot. Lindeman suffered his injury during a celebration following his 80-yard TD run in a scrimmage. Lindeman, who rushed for 1,000-plus yards his sophomore and junior years, ran for 225 yards and three TDs in a win over Airport last season.

3. Look for New Boston Huron coach Dan Kalbfleish to come up with a few more trick plays like he used during last year's long playoff run. Among the trickery was a 42-yard hook-and-ladder toss from quarterback Matt Hartwick to Devin Collins, who then flipped the ball to running back Jacob Fryer for a TD in a regional final win over Redford Thurston. Fryer, a big-play man, returns following his 1,000-yard rushing season, which included 280 all-purpose yards in the win over Thurston.

4. Derek McLaughlin guided Riverview to a state playoff appearance in his first year as head coach last season following a five-year run at Southgate Anderson, where he led the Titans to the state playoffs three times. He had an impressive Huron League debut when Riverview defeated Milan 21-7 in Week No. 2, ending the Big Reds' 14-game league winning streak. Riverview could find itself in the playoffs once again, returning seven starters on each side of the ball.