Catholic Memorial, Grafton, Wauwatosa East and Wauwatosa West join the Woodland/Parkland configuration from the Classic 8, North Shore and Greater Metro respectively.
Grafton, originally aligned in the new Woodland, is the only team from that league to play in the fall, and has joined the Parkland set-up for this season.
The rest of the league(s) has opted (except for Milwaukee Lutheran and Wisconsin Lutheran, who were more or less forced to by City of Milwaukee health regulations) for the alternate spring season.
2019 Record: 12-2 (6-2)
Notable Losses: QB/PK Luke Fox, OL Sam Bautz, OL Rocco Pellegrini, OL James Groehler, WR Joe Sikma, TE/LB/P Ben Kreul, LB Joey Goetz, TE/LB Cole Dakovich, WR/DB Dan Fynaardt, RB Tommy Schmitzer, DL Sergio Carini, DL Jake Koslo,
Notable Returnees: RB Obacoso Allen (Jr.), WR/RB/DB Alex Oechsner (Sr.), DB Charlie Jarvis (Jr.), QB/WR Rory Fox (Jr.), RB/LB P.J. Reynolds (So.), LB Langston Latham (Jr.), WR/DB Marvell Lee (Jr.), OL/DL Morgan McKnight (Jr.), LB Ben Didion (Sr.)
Non-Conference Opponent: @ Brookfield Central (10/2)
Outlook: After running roughshod through D4 in last year’s playoffs, the Crusaders now find themselves in a conference where the prevailing thought is the running roughshod will continue. For this year it will, no doubt there are a few teams that can push them, but this is still a C8 team in the Parkland. We’ll see if over time that “C8 edge” disappears. For now, CMH will have to plug in some holes along the O-Line and replace über-productive QB Luke Fox (does brother Rory slide in?), but leading rusher Obacoso Allen (968 yards, 12 TDs) returns as does Alex Oechsner (32 receptions, 526 yards, 8 TDs). On defense, the three-head monster of Ben Kreul, Cole Dakovich and Joey Goetz moves on, but look for Langston Latham and Morgan McKnight to really emerge as playmakers up front. Charlie Jarvis (61 tackles, 3 INTs) is also back in the secondary along with Oechsner (4 INT). It’ll be a bit of a nomadic experience for CMH this year between North and South as Carroll is not available to them, but they get New Berlin Eisenhower and Pewaukee at home, sandwiched around a trip to New Berlin West over the last three weeks.
2019 Record: 7-4 (6-3)
Notable Losses: RB Joey Giorgi, QB Zach Weir, TE/LB Mason Hunt-Olkowski, TE/LB Caleb Buback, OL Isaiah Mielke, DL Aaron Weisflog, DL Max Medvedev, LB Jay Garza, WR/DB Joe Birch, DB Dylan Robinson
Notable Returnees: OL/DL JP Benzschawel (Sr.), WR Dominic Voiland (Sr.), OL Nathan Skebba (Jr.), LB Kenny Likins (Sr.), LB Andrew Ribecky (Sr.)
Non-Conference Opponent: vs. Watertown (11/6)
Outlook: The resurgence of the Grafton program should continue with the move to the Woodland (at least record-wise, I question whether they can keep that “edge” they would have had from a NSC schedule in that division), but for this year they are in with the Parkland group. The Blackhawks lost a lot of production with the graduation of the state’s leading rusher in Joey Giorgi (2,338 yards, 29 TDs) and QB Zach Weir (2,106 yards, 23 TDs) and they will have to be replaced. Some bodies are back up-front (including Badgers recruit JP Benzschawel) along with playmaking receiver Dominic Voiland (58 receptions, 803 yards, 8 TDs). Benzschawel and LB Kenny Likins (56 tackles) will lead a defensive group that will have plenty of new faces. Grafton would be an odds-on favorite in the Woodland, but in the Parkland group they will be in a dog fight for that spot behind CMH. How quickly the new blood grows up will dictate where they ultimately finish.
New Berlin Eisenhower
2019 Record: 11-2 (7-1)
Notable Losses: OL/DL Isaac Freichels, RB/LB Eli Hoelke, WR/DB Max Lewis, RB/LB Jack Osielski, TE/LB Ben Buechel, RB/LB Colton Filipowicz, OL/DL Nick Anderson, TE/LB Eric Dreyer, TE/LB Ben Lapp, OL/DL Drake Weitzer, WR/LB Matt Baumann, WR/DB Nick Ciardo, OL/DL Will Wendlick, LB Gabe Olson, QB Gabe Seifert (transferred to Palmetto Ridge (FL))
Notable Returnees: PK Stjepan Peharda (Sr.), RB/LB John Wesling (Sr.), WR/DB Tristan Obst (Sr.), OL/DL Luka Zadrima (Sr.), OL/DL Sam Sidello (Jr.)
Non-Conference Opponent: vs. Wisconsin Lutheran (10/9)
Outlook: Eisenhower took a hit late in summer when multi-year starting QB Gabe Seifert transferred out-of-state. The Lions already had a lot to replace before that. It appears that maybe Tristan Obst (who was a receiver a year ago) or senior RJ Connell (who saw limited snaps) will take the reins. It stands to reason that John Wesling will carry the rushing load after going for 233 yards a year ago, but beyond him and Obst, there aren’t a lot of guys who got meaningful reps a year ago. Wesling and Luka Zadrima are the only two of the top 10 tacklers from a year ago that return as well as the defense will also have a new look. Even with the kicker being their biggest returning weapon, don’t count the Lions out as Kern has the program in a real good, consistent place right now. It might be a bridge too far to figure IKE as a threat to CMH this season, but stranger things have happened in this league.
New Berlin West
2019 Record: 9-2 (7-1)
Notable Losses: RB/LB Adam Siegel, OL/DL Donoven Acevedo, OL/DL Joey DiMotto, QB/WR/DB Jake Wieneke, WR/DB/P Aaron Sobush, TE/LB Luke Lehman, OL/DL Jared Henrichs, RB/LB Rudy Zavaleta
Notable Returnees: OL/DL Paul Nennig (Sr.), WR/DB Andy VanZile (Sr.), TE/DB Mike Paget (Sr.), OL/DL Carter Cullaz (Sr.), TE/LB Sam Engle (Sr.)
Non-Conference Opponent: vs. Port Washington (9/25)
Outlook: New Berlin West is another program that has struck a chord of consistency and despite heavy graduation losses cannot be completely counted out. Replacing Adam Siegel’s 2,104 yards and 26 TDs won’t be easy and running QB Jake Wieneke’s production will be missed as well. There doesn’t appear to be an heir apparent to Siegel based on last year’s stats, though I believe senior Carson Rose will be expected to take the snaps. Paul Nennig returns to anchor the O-Line, but the guys around him will be mostly new. Nennig and Carter Cullaz are back along the defensive front with Sam Engle and Andy VanZile behind them. The Vikings enter 2020 with a lot of question marks, the Week 3 matchup with Grafton will be a litmus test.
2019 Record: 6-5 (5-3)
Notable Losses: TE/DL T.J. Chadwick, OL/DL Fred Crawford, RB/DB Elliot Mueller, RB/LB Luke Leveille, RB/DB Justus Zemberi, PK/P Thales Andrade, OL/DL Grant Griesbach, WR/DB Logan Evers, OL/LB Joe Sklenar
Notable Returnees: OL/DL Jacob Kuglitsch (Sr.), RB/LB Kris Johnson (Sr.), OL/DL Cooper Young (Sr.), QB Logan Dobberstein (Jr.), RB/DB B.J. Yost (Sr.), RB/DB Nick McFadden (Sr.), RB/LB Max Sheridan (Jr.), WR/DB Nathan Schroeder (Jr.)
Non-Conference Opponent: @ Menomonee Falls (10/16)
Outlook: Based on what’s returning the Pewaukee Pirates may be the best equipped team in the Parkland to challenge Catholic Memorial. Several O-Linemen, starting QB Logan Dobberstein, and their top three rushers in Kris Johnson, B.J. Yost and Nick McFadden are all back. Johnson also doubles as their top returning tackler from his LB spot. The Pirates have a lot of young, talented multi-sport guys who have played in many big games already. Are they ready to take down Eisenhower and West? I believe so. However, despite being best equipped to challaenge the mighty Crusaders, will they? Tune in 11/6 to find out. Could be a matchup of in-conference unbeatens.
2019 Record: 1-9 (0-8)
Notable Losses: LB Andrew Steagall, RB Jacarri Oldham, WR Michael Cocroft, LB Ben Kraft, WR/DB Andy Albinger
Notable Returnees: OL/DL Marcus Mbow (Sr.), RB Mo Rockette (Sr.), QB Thomas Harper (Jr.), RB Jayden Lor (Jr.), WR Aidan Dodge (Sr.), WR A.J. Nichols (Jr.)
Non-Conference Opponent: @ Lake Country Lutheran (10/23)
Outlook: After years of trying, Wauwatosa East has finally shuffled off the Greater Metro coil. They find themselves in a league where the schools are more their size, but currently are probably still out of their league football-wise. The Red Raiders do have impressive Arizona State commit Marcus Mbow back along their lines and several offensive players with a couple years experience, so it’ll be interesting to see if they can put up some numbers here. Stats were a bit lacking, so I’m not sure what comes back defensively, but the guys from the East side of Tosa will absolutely have to improve on the 30.8 ppg conceded a year ago
2019 Record: 2-7 (2-6)
Notable Losses: DB Trevor Kuhl, DL Noah Loechler, RB Gerald Dawson, OL Cameron Jackson, OL Elijah Calhoun, RB Carter Keenan, DL Brady Ingbretson, DB Dylan Parker, LB James Kaine
Notable Returnees: QB/LB Logan Ertl (Sr.), QB Avery Dixon (Jr.), RB Alijah Maher-Parr (Jr.), LB Simon Doyle (Sr.)
Non-Conference Opponent: vs. Brookfield Central (10/30)
Outlook: The record didn’t show it, but Wauwatosa West was a very competitive team in the rugged Greater Metro. Unfortunately, no team in the greater Milwaukee area did a poorer job reporting their stats, so I’m going from memory of the one game of theirs I saw a year ago. Offensively, the team scuffled a bit, but Avery Dixon is an intriguing prospect at QB, while Logan Ertl is a versatile athlete with good size. The Trojans have a sizable senior class, but overall size is a bit lacking. Defensively they were excellent a year ago against some high-powered offenses, if they can bring that with them, they could upset the apple cart a bit in the Parkland.
1. Catholic Memorial
4. New Berlin Eisenhower
5. Wauwatosa West
6. New Berlin West
7. Wauwatosa East
-I don’t think I’m going out on a limb by choosing Catholic Memorial as the top dog here, but 2 through 6 legitimately could go any old way. Pewaukee gets the slight edge based on the amount they have returning, but Grafton coming in from the North Shore might still be a cut above their new Woodland brethren even with some big graduation losses. IKE losing their QB so late in the summer when he was one of the few pieces returning has me concerned. Wauwatosa West is a bit of a wild card and I’m betting they finish above at least one of the Woodland teams. New Berlin West lost so much production and has a lot of questions that need to be answered. I think they may scuffle a bit, particularly early on. The going should be slightly easier for Wauwatosa East this year…not sure it leads to any wins however. This makeshift league with Grafton swapping in for Pius/ML actually might be one of the better league races in the state…if you act like CMH isn’t there. 😄