Eden Prairie, Wayzata and Minnetonka lead a large pack, and watch DeLaSalle, too.
The west metro is a broad expanse, with too many football teams and players to do the area justice. But here’s a look at some things to watch for as the 2013 football season gets ready to take off.
The best in the west
A look at the top three Class 6A teams in the west metro and the top three teams among the other classes.
1. Eden Prairie: Like you didn’t know. Rob Olson, Eric Dunn, Zach Hovey, Dan Fisher, Anthony Anderson, etc., etc. This team is loaded.
2. Wayzata: The word is the Trojans have simplified their playbook to improve execution on offense. In other words, “Here it is. Try to stop us.”
3. Minnetonka: The Skippers swamped a Hudson (Wis.) football team that went to the state semifinals in 2012. They have balance on offense and a mean streak on defense.
1. DeLaSalle: The Islanders might not have big numbers but they do have more raw talent per capita than any team in the metro. Keep track of junior receiver Marquise Bridges; opponents could have trouble doing the same thing.
2. Delano: Longtime coach Merrill Pavlovich said he thinks this might be a rebuilding year, but the Tigers have elite talent in lineman Christian Triplett and receiver Adam Kraft. They also boast a strong football tradition.
3. Cooper: The Hawks lost a lot of talent to graduation, but speed can overcome inexperience. The Hawks have plenty of both.
On the cusp: Minneapolis Washburn, Holy Family, Providence Academy.
Five worth noting
They didn’t quite make the Star Tribune metro dream team, but will make a splash this fall.
• Nick Rooney, Minnetonka, QB: He won’t go unnoticed for long if he continues to play like he did in Friday’s 43-23 rout of Hudson. He was nearly flawless, completing 14 of 18 passes for 208 yards and two touchdowns.
• Adam Kraft, Delano, WR: Big (6-3, 200) with excellent hands and better-than-expected speed. Caught 20 passes in 2012, including eight for touchdowns. Intercepted six passes as a free safety.
• Keaton Stensrud, Benilde-St. Margaret’s, QB: Excellent athlete who is a dual threat to run or pass. He completed 100 of 172 passes for 1,342 yards and six touchdowns in 2012. He also rushed for 1,131 yards and 17 TDs.
• Chris Williams, DeLaSalle, RB: Runs strong inside, with incredible balance, quick feet and the ability to turn a mundane play into something highlight-worthy. Rushed for 1,427 yards and 22 TDs in 2012.
• Kolby Seiffert, Chaska, WR/DB: One of those players who always seems to be in the middle of the action. Scored a touchdown rushing and a touchdown on a fumble return in Friday’s wild season-opening victory over Hopkins.
• Don’t overlook: Khavon Hawkins, Cooper, WR; Chazz Johnson, Holy Family, RB; Nathan Johnson, Chanhassen, RB; Shaheed Hickman, Hopkins, RB; Marcus Berg, Blake, RB.
Mark the calendar
Every Friday night has worthwhile matchups, but high school football fans should attend at least one of these games.
• Sept. 6: Chaska at Chanhassen, 7 p.m. There is a buzz in the southwest metro about this one. Both teams can put up points, but does Chaska have enough defense?
• Sept. 20: Washburn at St. Paul Central, 7 p.m. See what it is about Washburn running back Jeff Jones that has recruiters all lathered up. Central likely will present his toughest test.
• Sept. 27: Hutchinson at Holy Family, 7 p.m. Last year Hutchinson defeated Holy Family twice by a combined scored of 127-14, including a 67-7 drubbing in the Prep Bowl. Not saying Holy Family will win, but the Fire has an extra spark.
• Sept. 28: Benilde-St. Margaret’s at DeLaSalle, 2 p.m. You can’t beat the setting: an afternoon game on Minneapolis’ historic Nicollet Island.
• Oct. 11: Wayzata at Eden Prairie. If you pick one game to represent Minnesota football on a national stage, this would be it. The state’s two biggest schools knock heads in a Class 6A state tournament preview.
|Toronto - D. Hutchison||12:05 PM|
|NY Yankees - M. Tanaka|
|Washington - S. Strasburg||12:10 PM|
|Miami - N. Eovaldi|
|NY Mets - J. deGrom||12:35 PM|
|Atlanta - E. Santana|
|Boston - J. Kelly||12:35 PM|
|Baltimore - M. Gonzalez|
|Milwaukee - W. Peralta||12:35 PM|
|Pittsburgh - V. Worley|
|Chicago WSox - J. Danks||12:40 PM|
|Tampa Bay - N. Karns|
|Cleveland - C. Kluber||1:10 PM|
|Minnesota - A. Swarzak|
|Detroit - R. Porcello||1:10 PM|
|Kansas City - J. Guthrie|
|Seattle - H. Iwakuma||1:10 PM|
|Houston - C. McHugh|
|Los Angeles - J. Wright||1:20 PM|
|Chicago Cubs - J. Turner|
|Texas - N. Tepesch||2:35 PM|
|LA Angels - C. Rasmus|
|Philadelphia - A. Burnett||3:05 PM|
|Oakland - S. Kazmir|
|San Francisco - R. Vogelsong||3:10 PM|
|San Diego - I. Kennedy|
|Arizona - W. Miley||3:10 PM|
|Colorado - C. Bergman|
|Cincinnati - A. Simon||7:05 PM|
|St. Louis - L. Lynn|
|San Diego||12:00 PM|
|Green Bay||12:00 PM|
|San Francisco||3:05 PM|
|Kansas City||3:25 PM|
|Chicago||9/22/14 7:30 PM|
|NY Giants||9/25/14 7:25 PM|
|St. Louis||5:30 PM|
|(11) Michigan State||73|
|(6) Texas A&M||58||FINAL|
|San Jose St||7||FINAL|
|(14) So Carolina||48||FINAL|
|New Mexico St||35|
|(1) Florida State||23|
|San Diego St||7||FINAL|
|Texas Tech||9/25/14 6:30 PM|
|(25) Oklahoma State|
|Appalachian St||9/25/14 6:30 PM|
|(12) UCLA||9/25/14 9:00 PM|
|(15) Arizona State|
|Middle Tennessee||9/26/14 7:00 PM|
|Fresno State||9/26/14 7:00 PM|
|(1) Florida State||9/27/14 2:00 AM|
|Duke||9/27/14 2:00 AM|
|North Carolina||9/27/14 2:00 AM|
|Texas-El Paso||9/27/14 11:00 AM|
|(20) Kansas State|
|Tennessee||9/27/14 11:00 AM|
|Vanderbilt||9/27/14 11:00 AM|
|Wyoming||9/27/14 11:00 AM|
|(11) Michigan State|
|Northwestern||9/27/14 11:00 AM|
|TCU||9/27/14 11:00 AM|
|Iowa||9/27/14 11:00 AM|
|Tulane||9/27/14 11:00 AM|
|So Florida||9/27/14 11:00 AM|
|Colorado State||9/27/14 11:30 AM|
|Western Mich||9/27/14 11:30 AM|
|Maryland||9/27/14 12:30 PM|
|Akron||9/27/14 12:30 PM|
|Bowling Green||9/27/14 2:00 PM|
|Arkansas||9/27/14 2:30 PM|
|(6) Texas A&M|
|Kent State||9/27/14 2:30 PM|
|Western Ky||9/27/14 2:30 PM|
|Minnesota||9/27/14 2:30 PM|
|Wake Forest||9/27/14 2:30 PM|
|FIU||9/27/14 2:30 PM|
|Miami-Ohio||9/27/14 2:30 PM|
|Colorado||9/27/14 3:00 PM|
|Louisiana Tech||9/27/14 3:00 PM|
|Texas||9/27/14 3:00 PM|
|Temple||9/27/14 3:00 PM|
|(16) Stanford||9/27/14 3:15 PM|
|TX-San Antonio||9/27/14 4:00 PM|
|South Alabama||9/27/14 4:00 PM|
|Cincinnati||9/27/14 5:00 PM|
|(23) Ohio State|
|Rice||9/27/14 6:00 PM|
|(18) Missouri||9/27/14 6:00 PM|
|(14) So Carolina|
|Boise State||9/27/14 6:00 PM|
|Central Mich||9/27/14 6:00 PM|
|Troy||9/27/14 6:00 PM|
|New Mexico St||9/27/14 6:30 PM|
|Memphis||9/27/14 6:30 PM|
|(10) Ole Miss|
|Texas State||9/27/14 7:00 PM|
|Washington St||9/27/14 7:00 PM|
|(9) Notre Dame||9/27/14 7:00 PM|
|(7) Baylor||9/27/14 7:00 PM|
|UNLV||9/27/14 7:00 PM|
|San Diego St|
|Illinois||9/27/14 8:00 PM|
|Oregon State||9/27/14 9:30 PM|
|Nevada||9/27/14 9:30 PM|
|San Jose St|
|Chivas USA||2:00 PM|