Marian Central's Brian Allen runs the through a drill during football practice July 25 in Woodstock.
Marian Central's Brian Allen runs the through a drill during football practice July 25 in Woodstock. — Matthew Apgar - mapgar@shawmedia.com

Carmel

Head coach: Blake Annen (2nd season, 4-5)

Last year’s record: 4-5

Key returners: Mitch Geier (WR/LB), Abe Ptasienski (OL/DL), Syone Usam-Harper (RB), Sean Bates (OL/DL).

Outlook: Annen boosted Carmel’s win total from one to four in his first season at the helm, and returns 11 starters. Annen said that after a strong finish last season, the Corsairs are looking to continue that momentum into 2019. The CCL/ESCC merger brings Brother Rice in Week 8 but also takes away Nazareth. Carmel went 3-0 against its fellow Purple Division teams last season. The Corsairs face St. Charles East in Week. Carmel lost last season’s meeting, 38-7, and it should provide a better idea of how competitive the Corsairs can be this fall.

Marian Central

Head Coach: Darren Fortin (1st season)

Last year’s record: 3-6

Key returners: Jayden Thiergood (OT/DE), Luke Rogers (RB), Harrison Stanko (S), Tom Novakowski (DB/WR), Brian Allen (DE), Austin Geils (ILB), Bryce Shelton (DB/WR).

Notable newcomers: Luke Dalton (OT), Mason Schwalbach (OG/DT), Lou Gaddy (ILB), Marlon Pomoli (K/P).

Outlook: The Hurricanes got off to a 3-1 start but dropped their last five games to miss the playoffs for the first time in almost a decade. Senior two-way lineman Jayden Thiergood has offers from the military academies, Central Michigan, Kent State and others. Thiergood and Brian Allen should give Marian a formidable defensive duo up front. Offensively, expect the Hurricanes to go run-heavy in Fortin’s first season. The CCL/ESCC merger should help Marian, but the schedule becomes more difficult after Week 4.

St. Patrick

Head Coach: Adam Guerra (3rd season, 7-11)

Last year’s record: 5-4

Key returners: Kwame Achampong (DE), Joe Fanning (OL), Vince Waters (LB), Eric Wozny (RB).

Notable newcomers: Jack Ryle (WR), Aidan Larson (QB), Alex Goworowski (LB).

Outlook: The Shamrocks improved from 2-7 in 2017 to 5-4 in 2018 and narrowly missed the postseason due to a lack of playoff points. St. Patrick has some next-level talent with senior defensive end Kwame Achampong, senior tackle Joe Fanning and linebacker Vince Waters. The Shamrocks will count on returning junior running back Eric Wozny to lead their ground game. St. Patrick’s nonconference gets tougher in the first two weeks. Gone are Taft (5-5) and Glenbrook South (2-7), replaced byEvanston (7-3) and Glenbrook North (7-3).

Editor's note: St. Viator did not respond to request for information.