Coach: Joel Stoneton (sixth year)

Last year’s record: 11-1, Western Class C champions

Returning letter winners: Seniors — Tyler Arsenault (WR/CB), Corey Staples (TE/DE).

Key losses: Jordan Conant (QB), Jake Steele (TB/LB), Kevin Hart (DE), Josh Confer (G/DE), Skylar Whaley (RB/LB), Andrew Smithgall (WR/LB), Jason Raymond (WR), Zac Farrington (WR/DB), Joe Morey (TB/LB), David Ketchen (DB), Chad Morang (T/DT), Riley Cobb (RB/DB, likely out for season with knee injury).

Promising newcomers: Seniors — Spencer Smith (FB/ILB), Corey Harris (TB), Dane Gomberg (DT), Darren Fisher (CB); Juniors — Travis Luce (QB), Ryan Conant (OLB), Joey Brennan (WR), Travis Hutchins (G/OLB), Travis Sherman (DE), Eric Duplessis (ILB), Derek Pamphrey (FS), Ryan Castonguay (T/DT); Sophomores — Robin Cook (DT), Chris Bowers (C).

Outlook: Told that his team is touted in some corners as a contender to defend its regional title, Stoneton fires back that those expectations are probably based on last year’s lofty reputation. The Ramblers are an almost totally new group. The good news is that some of the reinforcements saw as much varsity time as their predecessors due to frequent blowouts in 2008. Winthrop wields its most experience on defense, and that group may need to carry the Ramblers through the first few weeks. But beware the reigning champs in late October and early November, and certainly in 2010.

Coach’s comment:

“We could go two ways. Either we come together, or it goes south and we take it on the chin for a year. Every play is going to count for us this year.” — Joel Stoneton

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