Nearly 6,000 fans came to watch the next chapter in Northwestern football on Friday night at Traz Powell Stadium, but what most saw instead was North Miami Beach, a team with just 32 players dressed, rout the Bulls, 25-0, in a game that wasn’t as close as the store indicated.
The Chargers, 12-1 a year ago, took it to the Bulls from the start, using top-rated senior quarterback Nico Flores, who shredded the young Northwestern defense for nearly 300 yards. Underexposed receiver Kemal Ishmael came up with 2 TD receptions and was all over the field.
Coach Jeff Bertani, who we profiled a few weeks back, had his team ready all spring, and in the process, showed that the Chargers will be one of the best 6A teams in the state. Nobody at the game on Friday would argue with how impressive NMB looked.
Here are a few observations from both sides. First of all, the Bulls lost a lot of weapons. They will be better in the fall because there are a few players who could impact the team who were not dressed on Friday.
Senior safety Tevin McCaskill needs work. Right now, he lacks leadership qualities, and this team really needs that. The running game will be solid with Tyresse Jones, Daquan Hargrett and junior Corvin Lamb, and while Wayne Times has the experience at QB, you can guarantee that he will be moved to WR some time in the next few months, opening the way for Class of 2011 standout Teddy Bridgewater (6-3, 170). Receivers Tyrell Lewis and Michaelee Harris are solid.
The OL will be okay with Class of 2010 standouts Torrian Wilson (6-5, 320) and Donald Senat (6-3, 250), and Class of 2009 player Shkendrick Williams (6-3, 260).
Class of 2010 defensive lineman Todd Chandler (6-1, 280) is short and you question what will happen when he has to bang heads with ACC or SEC offensive linemen who are big and athletic as well. But he is a playmaker and is very young.
NMB has Flores, who is the best senior quarterback in Miami. He and Ishmael make up a small senior class that also includes defensive back Yves Desin, receiver Johnathan Cyprien, linebacker Antonio Rogers, linebacker/running back Markeith Russell and lineman Maurice Anderson.
The Chargers are loaded in the Classes of 2010 with receiver Terrance Kinchen, running back Nicolas Williams, and lineman Jiovanni Maldanado and Alex Eduaord.
The Class of 2011 appears to be the strength of this team, which points to the fact that the Chargers will be around for a long time.
Versatile (receiver/quarterback/defensive back) Ritchy Desir, linebackers Max Dorsainvil, Keeon Virgile and Kinley Moise, linemen Freddy Lagueere, Akeem Banton, Cleveland Smith, Wesley Joseph, Jovens Francois and Travis Turner are all quality as well.