Football team preview: Bishop McLaughlin

Bishop McLaughlin

At a glance

Coach: Ken Stills (first season)

Class: Sunshine State Conference (independent)

Last year: 1-7

Key players: LB/FB Shane Beatty, Jr.; OL Miller Clark, Sr.; LB/FB Jace Flournoy, Jr.; RB Tre Jackson, Jr.; QB Adrian Miller, Jr.; WR Jack Miller, So.; OL Shane Schull, Sr. 


Sept. 11 vs. Keswick Christian

Sept. 18 at St. John’s Country Day

Sept. 25 at Seven Rivers Christian

Oct. 2 vs. Carrollwood Day

Oct. 9 at Lakeland Santa Fe Catholic

Oct. 16 at Central Florida Christian

Oct. 23 at St. Petersburg Catholic

Oct. 30 Bye

Nov. 6 vs. Indian Rocks Christian

Things to know

Stills takes the spotlight

In February, Bishop McLaughlin hired Ken Stills as coach. Stills, a former player with the Packers and Vikings (1985-90), is the father of Texans wide receiver Kenny Stills. The elder Stills had plenty of coaching experience at just about every level. He was head coach with the River City Rage with the United Indoor Football League and running backs coach with the Los Angeles Xtreme of the XFL and at IMG Academy in Bradenton. Stills became the Hurricanes’ third coach in as many years. His biggest task is to turn around a program that went 1-7 last year and has not had a winning season since 2010. 

Go-to guys

Expect Tre Jackson and Scott Miller to have prominent roles on offense. Jackson, a conference champion in the 100 meters, has 4.4 speed and should get at least 20 touches a game according to Stills. Last season, Jackson rushed for 616 yards and averaged a whopping 11.2 yards per carry. Miller led the nation in receiving yards among freshmen for a four-week stretch last season. He finished with 21 catches for 577 yards, an average of 27.5 yards per catch. Those two playmakers will make life easier for quarterback Adrian Miller, a first-time starter, and an offensive line that has just two players with significant experience, Shane Scholl (transfer from Hudson) and Miller Clark. 

Swarming defensive speedsters

Stills said one the team’s biggest strengths is speed, particularly on defense. Every starter on that side of the ball runs the 40-yard dash in 4.9 seconds or less. Jackson, the team’s top returning tackler, will be counted as a two-way player. He will be joined by Jesuit transfer Shane Beatty and Jace Flourney to round out the linebacker unit.