Asked recently to list his team's strengths, Springbrook High School football coach Bob Milloy paused, sighed and hesitated for several seconds. Instead, he started naming his team's weaknesses.

"We haven't run the ball that well, we're not very big and, overall, we are not that talented," Milloy said. "We know we have to work every minute of every game to stay in there and we've made each game interesting."

Folks who follow Montgomery County football would swear this is another of Milloy's strategical ploys to lull opponents or motivate his players to even greater effort. After all, Milloy has said all that before and the school has done nothing but win the Maryland State AA football championships in 1979, '80, '81 and '85 and finish as runner-up to Gaithersburg last season.

When the seventh-ranked Blue Devils (11-1) meet second-ranked Seneca Valley (12-0) for the state title at Maryland's Byrd Stadium Friday at 7 p.m., it will mark the sixth time Milloy has advanced to the state final in nine years, making him the most successful coach in the history of the playoffs.

"Six times in nine years is a feat. I'm not bragging, but that is a feat," Milloy said. "Maybe it's the Springbrook tradition -- the kids go out and believe they are going to win."

With the exception of a 17-14 last-second loss to Seneca Valley in their regular-season meeting, the Devils have found a way to win. Milloy has been patient with his junior-laden team and it has surprised him with another 11-victory season.

"We have won some games I didn't think we could win and the kids have just made the big plays when we needed them," Milloy said.

"Seneca Valley is playing very well right now and doesn't have any weaknesses to speak of. They can run the ball, they can pass, they have the good kicking game with All-Met John Duke and their defense is the best part of their team. I was at the game Saturday {Seneca Valley beat Bowie, 27-0, in a state semifinal} and I was very impressed. Hey, but we're not going out there to lose."

The key performers for the Blue Devils are All-Met safety/wide receiver/punter/kick returner Brad Brown, quarterback Terry Wolfram, linebacker Kenney Williams and two-way tackle Mike Wnek.

Brown, a senior, has been Wolfram's top receiver, catching seven touchdown passes, two of them for 90-plus yards. Wolfram, a junior, has run the Devils' option offense very well and has developed into a fine passer. He has 13 touchdown passes. Williams has a handful of interceptions and fumble recoveries and made several key plays in last week's 10-6 semifinal win over Severna Park.

Wnek, linemen Mark Sturdivant and David Soper and linebacker John Martin have also shared hero laurels this year, particularly in the last few games. The Devils' defense has shown marked improvement since allowing a season-high 17 points to Seneca Valley. For the season, they have outscored opponents, 257-93, in 11 games.