Scouting Barrington: Plenty of new voices for Broncos
It has been six consecutive seasons of quarterback greatness at Barrington.
Dan Kubiak, Johnny Davidson and for the last two seasons Ray Niro have all given opponents fits while leading the Broncos to their winning ways.
"We have been real fortunate," Barrington coach Joe Sanchez said. "Whether it was Kubiak, Davidson, Niro, you just don't replace those guys. They did it their way."
Now it is Tommy Fitzpatrick's turn to pull a Frank Sinatra.
"Fitzpatrick will do it his way," Sanchez said. "Our job is put him in our offense and put him in the best possible position."
Fitzpatrick, a junior, has impressed Sanchez with his play this summer, especially with his ability to grasp offensive concepts.
"He is doing a real good job in managing the offense," Sanchez said. "Every day he gets better. He is ready now, but he needs game experience. You can simulate things in practice. But it is under the lights where you get some feedback."
What Fitzpatrick and the Broncos also have is a running back to take the pressure off the rookie quarterback. Michael Curran, who rushed for over 700 yards last season, will give Barrington that pounding running back.
"Michael has had a great summer," Sanchez said. "Besides being talented, he runs hard and is physical. He is also one of the best pass blockers I have seen as a running back. I have great confidence in him this year. He is going to impress a lot of people."
Fitzpatrick and Curran will operate behind an offense line that returns one starter from last season -- Sam Butera. Joining him will be be Tyler Wegehaupt, Colin Cress, Niko Kutrombis and Ray Schmitz.
The Broncos also return just one wide receiver in EJ Darlingtion. Barrington has an ability to get plenty out of first-year starting wideouts; this year's group includes Max Raynor, Michael Bedard and Tim Lowe.
"We graduated a lot of experience," Sanchez said. "It seems to always be that way. It is the next guys' turn. These guys work hard and get better every day. I am eager to see what we can do."
The defense has 3½ returning starters.
Luke Goodwin, who is one of those returnees, will anchor the defensive line. He will be joined by Zach Green, Kevin Meckert and Lukas VanNess.
Linebacker looks to be a strength for the Broncos with Mark Di Iorio, who started last season, and Dayven Shinhoster, who saw some time, returning. Hayden Kraus and Paul Kondraros also figure to see action.
Sam Sheedy returns at safety. He will be joined in the secondary by Matt Rizzio, Luke Kozlowski, Johhny Podlesnik and Nick Barron.
It won't be easy for Barrington, which has a tough nonconference schedule right out of the box. The Broncos are on the road against Warren, Buffalo Grove and Maine South before coming home to face Evanston. All four were playoff teams last fall.
"We will see what happens there," Sanchez said. "We have a lot to prove. Every week's a challenge, and this is what we get every year. We are excited about this grind and where we will be -- and we will find out right away against Warren."
Sanchez says he looks forward to seeing his largely inexperienced squad grow.
"This is a group that will learn and get better," Sanchez said. "It will be fun to watch them figure it out."