Those teams and McKinley comprise the Stripes Division of the DCIAA, the lower pool of teams.
Finding kids to play always has been the challenge for these programs, Eastern Coach Jason Strickland said.
“It’s been a while,” he said last week about having a varsity program. “As the school year gets closer and closer, you find more and more kids who are interested in playing. I guess they’re a little misinformed about football, that it actually starts at the beginning of August.”
Changes have been rampant on the DCIAA football landscape over the past few months — first the restructuring of the league occurred, then Spingarn closed in June, wiping out the team, followed by the introduction of new transfer rules by the DCSAA — but Phelps, Eastern, Cardozo and Theodore Roosevelt are more concerned with constant stability starting this season.
The pieces should be in place for that to happen. Roosevelt has been bolstered by several transfers, including Friendship Collegiate wide receiver Mike Jones, and Coach John Sharp said this week his team found a spark after it received new uniforms from Washington Redskins wide receiver Pierre Garcon.
Bell has several returning starters who will give the team a competitive shot at winning in the league, including junior linebacker and tight end Dontaye Sharp, who is expected to have a breakout year in 2013. At Eastern, a solid core of juniors has stuck together after roughing a junior varsity schedule for the past two seasons, including a strong backfield duo in Ora Moore and Dajuan Green. It hopes to make it the new Stripes city championship game on their home field Nov. 23, five days before the Turkey Bowl will be played there.
— Roman Stubbs
Seeking breakthrough in WCAC
Parity hasn’t exactly characterized the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference in recent years.
The last 10 championships have been won by either DeMatha or Good Counsel, with DeMatha hoisting the trophy from 2003 to 2008 and Good Counsel winning the last four. While these perennial powers again enter the season as the conference’s top two teams, it’s not a given that they will be the last two teams standing.
The tricky part stems from having to beat an opponent twice. Come playoff time, coaching adjustments stand to expose vulnerable areas and matchup problems that might not have been evident in a regular season matchup.