Monessen will lean on its athleticism
In his seven seasons as the football coach at Monessen, Andy Pacak has gotten used to his players being characterized as being "athletic."
However, even Pacak couldn't resist using that term to describe his team going into his eighth season.
"I would think that our big strength will be athleticism," said Pacak, who has won five Tri-County South Conference titles and has taken the Greyhounds (9-2 in 2010) to the WPIAL Class A playoffs six years. "We are always athletic, but this year I think we are even more athletic than usual and at a lot of different positions."
Two of the numerous athletes Pacak will be depending on are a pair of brothers — underclassmen Chavas and Justice Rawlins.
Chavas, a junior, will play quarterback and Justice, a sophomore, is a talented linebacker who garnered all-state and All-American recognition as a freshman.
"Chavas and Justice are throwbacks in that they are two kids you can actually sit down and hold an intelligent conversation with about different facets of the game," Pacak said. "They are students of the game, and I think they have an excellent chance of being Monessen's next Division I recruits."
Chavas Rawlins will step in for graduated quarterback Brady Kunsa, who threw for nearly 1,200 yards and 14 scores in 2010. Monessen also lost leading rusher Brett Crenshaw (715 yards, 7 touchdowns) and leading receiving Nick Bolias (522 yards, 4 TDs) to graduation.
Other key returning starters for Monessen include seniors Jalen Madison (LB/RB), Juwan Mull (OT/DT), Tyler Young (WR/DB) and Desmond Davis (C/DL).
"Overall, behavior will be a big issue with us," Pacak said. "If we can be consistent and have the same kids available week-in and week-out, I think we can make a run at something pretty special.
"If we don't, then we could be in trouble because we don't have the numbers."
Monessen won the conference title last season with an 8-0 record. The Greyhounds outscored conference opponents, 289-64.
Sept. 2, Geibel, 7
Sept. 9, at Mapletown, 7
Sept. 16, Carmichaels, 7
Sept. 23, California, 7
Sept. 30, at North Catholic, 7:30
Oct. 7, at Beth-Center, 7:30
Oct. 14, at West Greene, 7
Oct. 21, Jefferson-Morgan, 7
Oct. 28, at Frazier, 7Additional Information:
Coach: Andy Pacak
Record: 9-2, 8-0
All-time record: 623-328-47
Stadium: Memorial StadiumAdditional Information:
2010 statistical leaders
Passing: Brady Kunsa* • 55-107, 1,198 yards, 14 TDs
Rushing: Brett Crenshaw* • 119-715 yards, 7 TDs
Receiving: Nick Bolias* • 22-522 yards, 4 TDs