Here is a preview of the Davis Pirates for the Columbia Basin Big Nine 4A football season:
Coach: Rick Clark (6th year, 11-39).
Last league title: Never.
Last playoff berth: 1970.
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Home field: Zaepfel Stadium.
Returning starters: Offense (6): QB Deion Wright, Sr. (6-0, 184); WR Cooper Kupp, Sr. (6-1, 172); WR David Trimble, Sr. (6-0, 169); RB Austin Wagner, Sr. (5-7, 165); WR Carlos Perea-Vijarro, Jr. (6-1, 168); OL Calvin Henriquez, Sr. (6-0, 250). Defense (6): DB Kupp; DB Trimble; DB Chapman; LB Wagner; LB Austin Lynn, Sr. (6-1, 176); CB Perea-Vijarro.
Others to watch
OL/DL Camron Fry, Jr. (6-7, 320); RB/LB MIchael Moreno, Jr. (5-9, 170); OL Jens Jensen, Sr. (6-1, 225); RB/LB Christian Shead, Sr. (5-10, 168); RB/DB Josh Gasseling, So. (5-9, 165); WR/LB Luis Mendoza, Sr. (5-6, 161); RB/DE Jorge Alcala, Sr. (5-5, 171); RB/K Daniel Guzman, Jr. (5-6, 165); OL/DL Juan Amezola, Sr. (5-9, 218); OL/DL Miguel Ponce, Jr. (5-10, 300); OL/DL Osvaldo Pacheco, Jr. (6-0, 245).
* OL Jensen is a baseball player by trade, but decided to come out for football this season. He played Grid Kids as a middle schooler with Wright, Wagner and Kupp.
* One thing that set Davis apart last season was physical, aggressive interior line play on both sides of the ball. The Pirates need help in the trenches after graduating 7 of 9 starters on OL/DL.
* On offense, coach Clark plans to 'throw the hell out of the ball. We'll take our fair share of shots.' He's got the weapons to do it.
* CB Perea-Vijarro picked off 6 passes last year to lead all returning players. Don't expect QBs to test him as much this year.
With Wright, Wagner and Kupp, Davis returns three of the most productive offensive players in the CBBN. If the OL can live up to expectations, the Pirates should record their first back-to-back winning seasons since 1964-1966.
"It would be the first time since Lyndon Johnson was president and gas was 25 cents a gallon," Clark said. "You can quote me on that."