Last year's record: 5-5. (4-3 SWSC Red); Llost to T.F. South in first round of the Class 6A playoffs
Head coach: Tyrone Richardson, 0-0 at Thornridge and overall
Assistant coaches: Roland Royal, Scott Johnson, Mike Thomas, David C. Burton.
Returning starters: 15 (7 on offense, 8 on defense)
Top offensive players: Terrence Thomas, Sr. RB/Slot; DeVonte Stewart Sr. RB; Jamar Merritt, SR. RB; Gene Jackson, Sr., WR.
Top defensive players: Stephen Davis Sr. MLB; DeVonte Stewart, Sr. OLB; Terrell Deloach Sr. CB.
The Times' breakdown
With plenty of fresh faces at the skill positions, one of the biggest challenges facing first-year coach Richardson is how to replace last year's ground game, led by Iowa-bound running back Mika'il McCall. Merritt could fill that void as he rushed for more than 1,100 yards last year at Hobart. For starters, Richardson has brought in an offense that will combine spread offense and option to utilize what he sees as his team's best attribute, speed, with sophomore Tevin Newman running the show at quarterback. Richardson, who was defensive coordinator last year, plans to continue the Falcons' 3-5-3, with returning starter Davis moving from the line to middle linebacker. Thornridge will be tested early, as the Falcons open their season at home against Crystal Lake South, a school that reached the quarterfinals of the 6A playoffs last season.
Quote: "I can't wait for the season to start. I just want to see the program built from the ground up, starting with a good foundation, and I believe I can do that." !~ Richardson
Address: 15000 Cottage Grove, Dolton
Phone Number: (708) 271-4411
Athletic Director: T.J. Shirley
Home field: Thornridge High School field
!~ Vince Vosti