FOOTBALL: 2013 Detroit PSL East Preview: ML King Still Team to Beat in the East
Detroit PSL-East 2013 Preview
For the last six out of seven seasons, a team out of the PSL-East Division as won the league title. M.L. King in 2006, 2007, 2009 and 2012; Crockett (now East English Village Prep) in 2011; and Southeastern in 2008. ML King and East English Village Prep have been mainstays atop the league for a number of years, and the 2013 season should remain similar. King comes in as defending league champs and favorites to win their division, but could be challenged by East English Village Prep.
Order of projected finish: 1. ML King, 2. East English Village, 3. Denby, 4. Pershing, 5. Southeastern, 6. Frederick Douglass, 7.Osborn
Teams to watch:
M.L. King Crusaders
Head Coach: Dale Harvel
2012 Record: 6-4
Key players: Sr. CB-WR Jalen Embry, Sr. FS-WR-RB-KR Avonte Maddox, Sr. LB Carl Fuller, Sr. QB James Speight, Jr. S-LB Tyriq Thompson, So. RB DJ Griffin, Sr. DE-LB Dayvon Austin
Team outlook: The Crusaders are the defending league champions and boast three of the top players in the state in Embry, Maddox (Pittsburgh) and Fuller. Replacing a three year starter at quarterback, and their play in the trenches may be their biggest concerns, but they certainly have enough playmakers on both side of the ball to help make up for those deficiencies. Arguably the fastest player in the state, Avonte Maddox is a threat to score anytime he touches the ball, and 6-4 senior Stephon Parker is a sleeper at wideout. The defense should be tough as usual, with seniors Fuller, Embry, and Austin all returning, as well as newcomer Tyriq Thompson joining in.
East English Village Prep Bulldogs
Head Coach: Rod Oden
2012 Record: 9-3
Key players: So. RB Nate Boleware, Sr. WR-CB Rico Lewis, Fr. OL-DL Emani Mason, Jr. DL-OL Kamahl March, Jr. LB Andrew DeMoss, So. QB Anton Curtis
Team outlook: Head Coach Rod Oden has been as consistent as they come the past few years in the PSL as far as coaching goes. And he'll need that steady hand and experience with the young team he now has. Senior Rico Lewis will be counted on heavily on both sides of the ball, being one of just six seniors on the team. Still the young guns at "The Ville," have plenty of talent, including sophomores Nate Boleware (RB), Armani Posey (WR-CB), and Anton Curtis (QB). Juniors Kamahl March (OL-DL), and Andrew DeMoss (LB) will also be relied on to provide major contributions on the defensive side of the ball.
Head Coach: Tony Blankenship
2012 record: 4-5
Key players: Sr. QB Reynard Lewis, Jr. WR-CB Malik Whitehead, Jr. OL-DL Terrance Waddell, Jr. OL-DL Kristopher Mangum
Team outlook: Denby is another team in the PSL that is going through a rebuilding stage but is headed in the right direction. Tony Blankenship is back for his second stint with the program, and brings former Henry Ford head coach Mike Marshall with him. Marshall will be the offensive coordinator, and has two of the city's best offensive threats on his sidelines. Senior quarterback Reynard Lewis isn't well known, but has a rocket of an arm. Junior Malik Whitebead should be a viable target to throw to for Lewis at the wide receiver position. If anyone were to challenge King, or East English Village Prep in the East-Division, Denby is the team.