Players to Watch: Queen Creek
6 months ago Andrew Luberda 1
During the past few weeks I’ve visited five schools, including Queen Creek to preview the upcoming football season. In addition to interviewing players and coaches, I aim to identify who might be some of the top players on each team. Here’s a look at five Bulldogs to watch under the Friday Night Lights.
Devin Larsen (Jr), Quarterback – 6’5” 205
I wrote in this same spot a year ago, “Larsen is starting what could be a prolific varsity career at Queen Creek by the time he graduates.” I’ll amend that statement this year. Larsen is continuing what will be the most prolific varsity career at Queen Creek by the time he graduates. The former 6-foot-3 168-pound signal caller grew two inches and added nearly 40 pounds since last season, when he threw for more than 2,500 yards and 25 touchdowns. In my opinion, Larsen is as valuable to the Bulldogs as any of the best players in Arizona are to their teams.
Addison Udall (Sr), Free Safety – 5’11” 195
Udall ended last season with 46 tackles, including eight tackles-for-loss, four sacks and two fumble recoveries. He inflicted damage as an undersized defensive end and linebacker in 2016. This season he’s moving to free safety, where he’ll be an imposing defender for the opposition. Perhaps a relative unknown surprise last year, Udall won’t be either an unknown or a surprise this season.
Dante Coleman (Sr), Outside Linebacker/Running Back – 6’0” 205
Coleman may get more carries as a running back in 2017 than either of his previous two varsity seasons. Or maybe not. He is the best defender on the Bulldogs, as evidenced by his 67 tackles, including 15 tackles-for-loss, and nine sacks a year ago. The latter two stats were team highs in 2016. Expect Coleman to have his best season yet after dedicating it to his late father, Geno.
Cooper Wetch (Jr), Defensive Tackle/Offensive Lineman – 6’1” 240
Wetch played in 10 varsity games as a sophomore, finishing with 34 tackles, four tackles-for-loss and four sacks. He’ll be a two-way starter as a junior after securing a spot on the Bulldogs’ offensive line. Bulldogs’ head coach Travis Schureman likes to have the toughest and meanest among the position group he coaches. Wetch qualifies in both area, no doubt the result of his experience as an interior defensive lineman last year. He’ll dominate on both sides of the line-of-scrimmage in 2017.
Dakota Banning (Jr), Center – 6’1” 225
Banning is entering his second varsity season and is the anchor of the Bulldogs’ offensive line. It’s not unusual for Schureman to limit public or private commendations related to his group. The fact that Banning is one of two mean sons of (guns) named here indicates the entire offensive-line unit figures to be a strength in 2017.