Football preview: Countryside — Aug. 12


At a glance

Coach: Eric Schmitz, ninth season

Class: 3, District 7 (Metro)

Last season: 6-6

Key players:  OG/C Caleb Brecher, Sr.; FS/WR Jalen Brown, Sr.; CB/WR Marcus Coleman, Sr.; DT Cecil Jackson, Sr.; WR Terrence Jackson, Sr.; LB Elijah Mills, Sr.; QB/FS Dylan Nahra, So.; DE DeMarcus Wallace, Jr.; C TJ Walsh, Sr. 


Aug. 26 vs. Dunedin, 7:30

Sept. 1 at River Ridge, 7:30

Sept. 9 at Clearwater, 7:30

Sept. 16 at Seminole, 7:30

Sept. 23 vs. Palm Harbor University, 7:30

Sept. 29 at Largo, 7:30 

Oct. 7 vs. Boca Ciega, 7:30

Oct. 14 at Osceola, 7:30

Oct. 21 at St. Petersburg, 7:30

Oct. 28 Bye

Nov. 4 vs. East Lake, 7:30


Countryside came on late last season, winning three of its final regular season games, to make the playoffs. The talent is there to make another run. On offense, the biggest task is replacing Jaden Griffin, who ran for more 1,400 yards and had 18 touchdowns on the ground. Without that dynamic back, the Cougars could lean more on their passing game given what they have back. Dylan Nahra, who threw for more than 1,000 yards and 10 touchdowns as a freshman last season, is poised to put up even better numbers thanks to a deep receiving corps led by Terrence Jackson (team-leading 433 yards and three touchdowns a year ago). Countryside should also be strong up front on both sides of the ball. Caleb Brecher and TJ Walsh anchor the offensive line. Cecil Jackson and DeMarcus Wallace can wreak havoc on the defensive line. The top returner on defense is linebacker Elijah Mills, who had a team-leading 114 tackles and two sacks last season.