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Salem High School gridiron preview
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Projected starters (offense):
QB: No. 19 Gerald Walker
Running Back: No. 15 Hasan Boddie, No. 32 Tyriano Greene
Wide receiver: No. 12 Kanome Mcintosh, No. 18 Justin Marshall
Tight-end: No. 10 DJ Carter
Left Tackle: No. 56 Tyson Turner
Left Guard: No. 72 Davon Bigsby
Center: No. 68 Siyani Boyd
Right Guard: No. 74 Nick Booker
Right Tackle: No. 51 Nick West

Projected starters (defense):
Defensive Tackle: No. 75 Zaayid Cooper, No. 9 Robert Champers
Defensive End: No. 55 Craig McCleod, No. 59 Jordan Robinson
Linebacker: No. 52 Torrance Jones, No. 50 Davion Bigsby
Strong Safety: No. 1 De'Morreal Burnam, No. 36 Robert Kimble
Free Safety: No. 26 Evan Jones
Cornerback: No. 16 Elijah Daniels, No. 33 Nijaron Brown

Impact players:
Davon Bigsby No. 72 left guard, Kanome Mcintosh senior No. 12 receiver, TJ Jones No. 52
Hasan Boddie senior No. 15

Most improved:
Nick Booker senior No. 74 right guard

Breakout player:
Robert Kimble No. 36 strong safety

Quintis Maddox senior No. 44 defensive end


John Starr and Salem are coming off a losing season that saw them go 3-7. However, Starr is a proven coach, with a state championship on his resume. This could be the season that sees them get back to their winning ways. Starr speaks on his team's size and style of play in this quick Q&A.

The Rockdale News: Coach, just want to talk to you a little bit about your experience, as far as your team is concerned. How are you looking? How do you think that's going to affect you as far as the season goes?

John Starr: Well you know we, we're gonna come out very optimistic as always. We feel real good about our opportunities here. I think our kids have really worked hard and bought in to what we're trying to do. So we're real excited about the season.

RN: Alright, coach. Tell me a little bit about your team's size. It looks like you have some height, maybe not a lot of girth, but it looks like you have some height.

Starr: I think it's probably a little bit the other way around, actually when it comes down to it. We do have tall receivers, a couple tall, decent-sized receivers. But for the most part we're probably bigger than we've been in the past on the defensive front and probably a little bit bigger on the offensive line than we were in the past. We're still small and all of our running backs are still small. That's kind of been our thing since I've been here.

RN: Tell me a little bit about your style of play and how the personnel you have this year is going to affect how you play going forward?

Starr: As always, we want to be a team that can establish the run game and be able to run the football. Yes, we're gonna throw it a little bit, but our MO is running the football. Defensively we're hopefully gonna be able to stand up and stop the run. I think in this league you have to be able to stop the run to be successful.

RN: Coach, give me a prediction. Give me a prediction on the season. I know coaches don't like to give predictions, but give me a prediction on the season.

Starr: (He laughed) All I can tell ya is, we're gonna show up and we're gonna play hard, that's what we're gonna do.

RN: We're highlighting each team's impact players. Just tell me a little bit about yours.

Starr: That's pretty difficult. The guys that stepped up and showed a lot of courage and class has been our offensive linemen. Big twin, Davon Bigsby has really been stepping up. He's played multiple positions across the offensive line. He does a great job. He's really worked hard to get his self in great condition. He's doing a great job for us. Kanome Mcintosh has done a great job playing receiver and coming out and helping out on defense as well. He's a rising senior that's got a few offers that we're really excited about his future. It's so many of them. They're so good. Zaayid Cooper on the defensive line has been pleasant, not really a surprise because he was all-region as a freshman. He's a junior this year. He's really come on for us and the defense holding down the middle. T.J. Jones at linebacker does a great job for us. Hasan Boddie is a rising senior that spent most of the time on injured reserve last year, but he's finally back. He's doing a great job playing multiple offensive skill positions. He may line up anywhere. I don't know where he's gonna line up. He does a great job for us. We've got so many kids, when you start singling them out it's very difficult to do. I've just been really, really pleased with all our guys on our offensive line. They just really have gelled, whether it's Nick Booker, Nick West, Tyson Turner - all those guys have really stepped up. Siyani Boyd, Chris I mean I can go on all day cause those guys have really got my attention this year.