AUBURN — It didn’t take long for senior tailback Teven Colon to impress new Edward Little football coach Dave Sterling.

In the Red Eddies’ first exhibition game against Bangor, Colon broke off a 65-yard touchdown run from the tailback position, then later split out wide as a receiver for another big play.

“(On the run), he juked the linebacker at the second level and exploded past the secondary before they saw him coming,” Sterling said. “Later in the game, we matched him up in open space and they walked the linebacker up to cover him and we completed a 40-yard pass over the top to him.”

Ask Colon what he’s thinking when he makes such game-breaking plays and he’ll offer little more than a shrug.

“I couldn’t really tell you how I do it,” he said. “I just empty my mind and do what I need to do to get by guys.”

It usually doesn’t take too much more than his instinct. A shoulder fake here, a hesitation move there, maybe a spin. Then Colon’s superb speed takes over, and that is when few, if any, stand a chance of catching him.

“We’re going to use him as much as we can in open space,” Sterling said. “We get him in a one-on-one situation, we’re more than happy to do that any time.”

Edward Little tried to get Colon in one-on-one situations last year, too, but a quarterback shortage limited those chances.

“I used to play tailback all of the time, then our quarterback got injured, so I went to quarter,” Colon said. “(Tailback) is normal for me.”

As a quarterback, he still managed to finish 10th in the Pine Tree Conference in rushing, averaging a little over 6.5 yards per carry en route to 652 yards and six touchdowns.

But there isn’t much Colon misses about the 2009 season, in which the Red Eddies lost seven out of eight games. Despite the tumult of a last month, which saw new head coach Travis Dube resign to take a job at Bridgton Academy and Sterling swoop in to fill the vacancy, Colon said this year’s seniors have insisted on stability and focus during preseason.

“There’s no drama,” he said.

One thing he will miss is his big brother Wade blocking for him. The former lineman is helping out on the coaching staff, which is comforting to Teven.

“Every time I’m down, he’ll be there to pick me up,” he said.

Colon spent the off-season at football camps in Florida, Connecticut and Orono, so he can be sure college scouts were taking notice of him before his high school coach even met him. High school opponents will become acquainted or reacquainted, too, starting Friday night with Brunswick, and Colon insists they’re in for a surprise.

“Everyone has been dissing us, saying ‘Oh, you guys are nothing. Look at what you did last year.’ We’re just going to come out bigger and better this year,” he said.

 “It’s a big goal, but I want to win states,” he added. “If not, at least (make) the playoffs, and make sure the underclassmen understand what it takes to get to the playoffs.”

If the Eddies get there this year, Sterling said, other players such as QB Josh Delong, running backs Luc Farrago and Cory Spruill, and receivers Spencer Emerson, Zach Leblond and Ken Treadwell will have to play a big role. But there can be no doubt who opposing defenses will be most concerned about on every play.

“You get someone like him on the edge, like if we put him in the slot position when we spread the field, or if we put him in the backfield and put him in motion, it makes the entire defense change what they’re expecting,” Sterling said.

Given Colon’s experience at QB, could they be expecting some sort of wildcat formation, Sterling was asked.

“No comment,” he said.

Colon dodged the same question like he dodges an air-tackling safety.

“I don’t know,” he said. “That’s a little secret we’ve got.”

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