Thursday, May 31, 2012

Eddie Cahill Named To All-Southern Team, December 8, 1928

By Sports Staff
Leesburg Morning Commercial
December 8, 1928

EDDIE CAHILL, Leesburg's own great grid warrior, has been awarded merited honor, and the greatest honor that comes to prep school football players. A membership in the All-Southern mythical team, awarded by the All-Southern association officials. It is the peak of achievement in the Southern states, and the height of aspiration on the part of the rugged boys of Dixie who play the game with fearless heart and intelligence.


Sports Staff
Leesburg Morning Commercial
December 8, 1928

100 East Main Street
Leesburg, Florida 34748


Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Its Official Perry Signs With Carson Newman College, May 30, 2012

(Joshua C. Cruey, Orlando Sentinel/October 14, 2011) Leesburg's Trevone Perry runs the return for a touchdown breaking a 0-0 tie during third quarter action of a high school football game against South Sumter in Bushnell, Fla. on Friday October 14, 2011.

By Gerald Lacey
Staff Writer
Carver Heights Quarterback Club
May 30, 2012

LEESBURG - Leesburg High School's Trey Perry has signed a letter of intent to play football at Carson-Newman College in Jefferson City Tennessee. Perry played running back and safety for the Jackets last season. He helped lead the Jackets to a 8-2 (2-2) record in 2011. Perry has big play ability from either side of the ball and can score from anywhere on the field. 

Perry's most memorable plays were his 96 yard kickoff return against Class 3A #5 ranked South Sumter at Raider Field in Bushnell Florida. The play broke a 0-0 score and led the Jackets to their first win over a ranked opponent in head coach Randy Trivers two year tenure at Leesburg. Perry also had a 90 yard interception return against Orlando Maynard Evans that was called back negating a Leesburg score and a tie for the district lead.

Carson-Newman's Burke-Tarr Stadium
Perry is the grandson of another Yellow Jacket great Mathis Walker. Walker led the Leesburg Boys Basketball team to its first ever state Championship in Leesburg High School history in 1977. His father Bill Perry led Eustis to the Class AA Boys Basketball State Championship game in 1992. His sister Ashley Perry who is a senior at Leesburg helped lead the girls basketball team to a Class State Final Four appearance in 2011.

Mathis Walker 1977 Class 3A Boys Basketball State Champion.
He will get the chance to play for Ken Sparks who is in his 33rd season as Carson-Newman head coach.

Sparks has built a national football powerhouse first at the NAIA level and now at the NCAA Division II level. The numbers speak for themselves when examining the success Sparks has brought to the Eagle football program - five national championships, four national runner-up finishes, 21 South Atlantic Conference championships and 22 NAIA or NCAA playoff appearances. A respected and well-known coach at any level, Sparks has accumulated the best won-lost record and highest winning percentage of any coach in Carson-Newman football history.

Carson-Newman College Head Coach Ken Sparks
In 31 seasons at the wheel of the Eagle machine, the 1968 C-N graduate has guided his troops to a 294-74-2 record. Sparks is the all-time winningest coach in NCAA Division II and he is third in total wins among active coaches in all divisions of the NCAA behind St. John's (Minn.) John Gagliardi and Penn State's Joe Paterno.

The Eagles report for fall camp in early August to begin preparation for their 33rd season under Sparks, who begins the season with 299 career wins. Carson-Newman went into spring shorthanded and Perry may have chance to play right away in his freshmen year. 

Carson-Newman College Head Coach Ken Sparks
"Some kids really made a lot of strides," head coach Ken Sparks said. "We've got a lot of guys that had to go the extra mile this spring so they had to play a lot of positions. They can't complain about not getting enough reps. We've got some pieces that are pretty good, but we have some pieces that have got to be a lot better."

Carson-Newman's Assistant Football Coach and Recruiting Director Aaron Hutsell is excited about adding Perry to his team's roster.

"Trey’s signing will have a huge impact on our program," said Hutsell in a interview with Carver Heights Quarterback Club Staff Writer Gerald Lacey. "He is a very versatile athlete who brings a strong work ethic and natural leadership. He has the ability to influence others with his strong character and drive."

Carson-Newman's Assistant Football Coach and Recruiting Director Aaron Hutsell
Perry and others have benefited from Trivers college style system that he has bought to the Leesburg program and community. He has sent 10 Jackets to college in his two years at Leesburg, with more waiting to sign. At his former school Germantown Northwest (MD) he sent over 60 players to college.

I asked coach Hutsell did the solid program that Trivers has built at Leesburg help in the decision to recruit Perry. Hutsell said that Trivers system and reputation played a part in the signing.

"I believe that certainly helped'" said Hutsell on Trivers and the Leesburg football program. "Coach Trivers has been very helpful throughout the entire process.  After we did our research on Trey, it just turned out to be a great fit for both sides."

Ken Sparks Athletic Complex

Perry will go into the Carson-Newman program as a defensive back but with his athleticism he could find himself lining up in several different places in college.

"Trey will be coming in as a Defensive Back, and we will see how he progresses," said Hutsell.  "There are a lot of things that he could play athletically"

Perry is the first player from Leesburg to sign with Carson-Newman since Ken Rooney in the 1990's. Carson-Newman may not be done yet in Leesburg but is very happy to get Perry signed for the 2012 season. Hutsell said he doesn't remember anyone from Leesburg signing with the Jefferson, Tennessee college recently.

"I don’t think we have in the last couple of years (signed anyone from Leesburg High School), but Coach Sparks has been recruiting Florida for a long time so I would imagine that at some point there has been a player from Leesburg  who has attended Carson Newman.

"Coach Trivers has been excellent during the recruiting process with Trey.  He has experience as a college coach, so he knows what information that we need to have in order for us to be able to make a decision on a player."

"Leesburg is a football program that has always had really good athletes. Coach Trivers and his staff will do a great job of pushing their players to get it done on the field as well as in the classroom." 


Aaron Hutsell
Assistant Football Coach/ Recruiting Coordinator
Carson-Newman Football
Ken Sparks Athletic Complex

904 E. Mountcastle St.
Jefferson City, TN 37760

(O) (865) 471-4794
(F) (865) 471-4466

Leesburg Public Library

Benton Leads Jackets 4th Quarter Rally Over Eastside 27-26, May 25, 2012

Eastside lineman James Henderson clears a path for quarterback Sir Jackson to run against Leesburg during their spring scrimmage on Thursday at Citizens Field. Matt Stamey/Staff photographer

By Gerald Lacey
Staff Writer
Carver Heights Quarterback Club
May 25, 2012

GAINESVILLE - Leesburg second year head coach Randy Trivers and his Yellow Jackets squad traveled to Citizens Field Thursday night. They face a Eastside program that has been revitalized by first year head coach Jeff Parker. The visiting Yellow Jackets rallied for two touchdowns in the fourth quarter, capping it with a 44-yard scoring run by sophomore Bryant "Mr. No" Benton to beat Eastside 27-26.

"It felt more then great being on the offensive side of the ball during the key moments of the game," said Benton with lots of enthusiasm in his voice.

Benton a sophomore last season spent most of his time playing on the defense last season. He will be seeing a lot more time on offense this upcoming season after his big time spring game performance. 

Eastside came into the game with a renewed attitude and a sense of urgency. The Rams offense showed that it can move the football with 223 total yards in the first half. New offensive coordinator Willie Jackson's offense had several big plays and will be a force to deal with in the upcoming season. The offense was led by Jackson's son at quarterback, Sir Jackson who threw three touchdown passes of  22, 59 and 38 yards and had 144 total passing yards, along with 76 yards rushing on seven attempts. This from a team that was shut out four times last season.

Jackson only completed four passes in the first half with three of those going for TDs. The first was a connection with Keandre McCray for a 22-yard score, tying the game up at 6.

“I was pleased with the boys. We lost, but we came out here to get better,” said second-year Eastside coach Jeff Parker. 

“We were putting points on the board, moving the ball up and down the field, but we had turnovers and we have to correct that. You come out here and score a bunch of points, and your defense shuts them out that gives you a false sense of security. These boys are hungry and they need to stay hungry.”

The Leesburg "Black Jackets" defense came up with big stops when it needed to. The Jackets intercepted Jackson twice and caused two fumbles, one returned for a Leesburg touchdown by Austin Walker for a 6-0 lead in the first quarter.
"I think the key to coming back in that game Thursday was our ability to handle and embrace adversity," said OLB Jordan Tucker the #50 rated prospect in Florida according to the Miami Herald High School Sports Blog. 

Jackson found a streaking Jamari Walker, who caught the pass and ran 59 yards down the left sideline for a score to tie the game at 13 all. Just before halftime Jackson found a wide-open David Smith on a 38-yard scoring strike to put the Eastside ahead, 20-13. The Eastside crowd erupted after the score and the Rams went into halftime with momentum on their side.

"At halftime we had no heads down, nothing but positivity and ways to get back into it," said Tucker after going into halftime down by seven. "Thanks to Coach Trivers and his great coaching a halftime deficit doesn't phase us at all".

The Jackets came out of the half and found itself in a deeper hole early in the third quarter. Richard Williams had the third interception of the night against the Leesburg offense, returning it 61 yards to the Jackets' 9-yard line. Two plays later, LaMartinez Walker ran it in from six yards, and Eastside opened a 26-13 lead early in the third.

The Black Jackets came up big once again on the last play of the third quarter when it recovered a Eastside fumble at the Rams 17 yard line.  A16-yard run by Benton set up a one-yard plunge for a score, bringing the Yellow Jackets within six, 26-20 with 10:53 to play in the fourth quarter.

"We have to fix the little things in order to get to the top where we want to be during the fall season," said Benton. 

"We have a lot of seniors but only one captain, so we do have to become a little more focused and mature to be successful," said Tucker.

Leesburg's defense gained momentum after the score on offense and on the next Rams possession its offensive sputtered. On Leesburg's next possession it got consecutive big runs from Benton, who ran for 18 and then 44 to tie the game at 26-26 with 4:38 left. Chandler Strong's extra-point kick was successful and proved to be the difference for the Jackets in their road win.

"My attitude towards the spring and the spring game win is we all played a hard game, and went hard through out the spring," said Benton after the game. "So I can't just say I'm satisfied with our team. I am proud and grateful to be a JACKET."

 Parker praised the play of Sean Scott and Barry Johnson along the line.

“We found ourselves a linebacker in Sean Scott. He made a bunch of plays for us,” Parker said. “Barry Johnson had a really good game also. We put them in a couple of tough positions with the turnovers.

“We want to build a group of guys that keep fighting all the time. They came out here and fought until the end. We had plenty of chances down there, we just have to make some plays. We have to hold onto the ball. When it hits your two hands, you need to catch it.”

Tucker and the Jackets are looking forward to a great summer and hope that the win gives them some momentum going into the fall.

"Well after a good spring game I look forward to the fall," said Tucker after the come from behind win over Eastside. "Our team and myself did some good things and I know there are some things for me to work on so I look forward to getting better and having a good fall."

"The team including myself just has to keep working hard through the summer and just remember the taste of victory."


Sports Staff
Gainesville Sun
Matt Shamey 
Staff Photographer
Gainesville Sun
May 24, 2012

Leesburg Public Library

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Danny Trevathan Signs $2.2 million Deal With Broncos, May 24, 2012

By Gerald Lacey
Staff Writer 
Carver Heights Quarterback Club
May 24, 2012

LEESBURG - On Tuesday a member of the Yellow Jackets Nation became multi-millionaire. Danny Trevathan officially became a Denver Bronco, signing a four-year, $2.2 million contract according to Aaron Wilson of

Trevathan was picked by the Broncos in the sixth round of the draft, and his contract includes a signing bonus of roughly $104,000 and base salaries of $390,000, $480,000, $570,000 and $660,000. Trevathan joins a trio of Kentucky alums in Denver, with Jacob Tamme, Wesley Woodyard, and Jeremy Jarmon on the roster, as well as former UK wide receiver Anthony “Champ” Kelley on staff.

"I'm proof that nothing is impossible," Trevathan said. "It took a lot of work from a lot of people, but I got there. I want that to be an example to everyone at Leesburg that you can accomplish anything with hard work." 

Justin Edmonds - Getty Images ENGLEWOOD, CO - MAY 11: Linebacker Danny Trevathan #59 of the Denver Broncos participates in a drill during rookie camp at Dove Valley on May 11, 2012 in Englewood, Colorado. (Photo by Justin Edmonds/Getty Images)
Trevathan is a athletic linebacker whose speed and playing intensity have drawn comparisons to UK All-SEC linebacker Wesley Woodyard. He was a three-year starter at Leesburg High School (Leesburg, Fla.), leading the team Leesburg to two state playoffs appearances and a District Championship in 2007 the first since 1992. Trevathan was named Third-team all-state, covering all classifications, by the Florida Sportswriters Association in 2007. 

The Denver Broncos are wasting no time in signing their draft picks. Trevathan gives the Broncos four draft picks under contract. There are three draftees still unsigned as the team continues their Organized Team Activities. The sixth-rounder is the fourth pick to sign with the team and the signings have come on the last four weekdays.

The Denver Broncos used their final pick in the 2012 NFL Draft on Kentucky linebacker Danny Trevathan. The pick was included as compensation in the trade that sent former quarterback Tim Tebow to the New York Jets. Trevathan is expected to compete on special teams and add depth to a Denver defense that looked destructive for stretches last season.

"I can't wait to get out there and get to work, learning the system," Trevathan said.

Trevathan is one of the top 5 SEC steals of the draft according to Barrett Sallee SEC lead blogger for

"Trevathan's size is what limited him during the draft process. At 6'1", 232 lbs, he's a little bit undersized as an NFL linebacker. That didn't seem to stop him at Kentucky though," said Sallee.

Photo by Amy Smotherman Burgess, ©KNS/2011
Kentucky linebacker Danny Trevathan tips a pass from Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray at Commonwealth Stadium in Lexington on Saturday, Nov. 26, 2011. UT lost to UK for the first time since 1984 with a score of 10-7.(AMY SMOTHERMAN BURGESS/NEWS SENTINEL)
"He will have to prove himself on special teams with the Broncos, but once he proves himself at the NFL level, he should enjoy a long and prosperous career."

Trevathan is excited about having the opportunity to play in the NFL after outstanding careers at Leesburg High School and the University of Kentucky. He was the only player with area ties to be selected in the Draft.

"I feel good," said Trevathan. "I wanted to get drafted in an earlier round, but I'm certainly not upset. How could I be disappointed? I got drafted! 

Kentucky Wildcats linebacker Danny Trevathan (22) broke up the pass to Mississippi State Bulldogs wide receiver Ricco Sanders (11) as Mississippi State defeated Kentucky 28-16 on Saturday October 29, 2011 in Lexington, Ky. Photo by Mark Cornelison | Staff MARK CORNELISON | STAFF

Read more here:
"Danny was the heart and soul of our team," Kentucky defensive coordinator Rick Minter said. 

"Not just on our defense but on our team. He lived up to the reputation that preceded him -- or that I found out about when I got here. He was a leader. He worked hard. He was a playmaker, a producer. 

"I was never disappointed in the way he brought it." 

"This kid makes a ton of sense for the Denver Broncos," NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock said on the network's draft broadcast.

Linebacker Danny Trevathan. Photo By Danny Mason
Trevathan led the Wildcats -- and the entire Southeastern Conference -- in tackles  in 2011 with 143, the second straight year he accomplished that feat.

For his career, Trevathan has 374 tackles, six sacks, 32.5 tackles for loss, 11 forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries, nine passes defensed and four interceptions.

"Danny Trevathan is everywhere," Mayock said, noting that scouts he talked to called him "one of the toughest kids in the SEC."

Danny Trevathan carries the ball in a Leesburg High School game.
Below are a list of some Trevathan's accomplishments at Leesburg High School:

First-team All-Central Florida by the Orlando Sentinel

Area Defensive Player of the Year for Lake and Sumter counties by the Sentinel

Area Defensive Player of the Year by the Leesburg Daily Commercial 

Senior statistics included 117 tackles, seven tackles for loss, 5.5 quarterback sacks, two fumble recoveries (one returned for a touchdown), and three caused fumbles

Played quarterback and running back on offense 
Rushed 56 times for 427 yards, a 7.6-yard average, and three touchdowns

Notched 98 tackles, including 17 for loss, along with five caused fumbles, three fumble recoveries, and six sacks as a junior 

Played in the Central Florida East-West All-Star Game following his senior season 

Played for the winning West team, causing a fumble with a big hit and had a long return on another fumble to set up a touchdown 

Was timed as fast as 4.45 seconds in the 40-yard dash

All-around athlete who was a member of the school's weightlifting, basketball, baseball and track teams ... Ran the 100- and 200-meter dashes in track, along with the 4x100-meter relay.


The Bleacher Report
Daily Commercial
Denver Broncos
NBC News
Max Denver 
Pro Football Scout

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Leesburg At Gainesville Eastside Game Preview, May 22, 2012

Photo from the 2011 Spring Football Game Gainesville Eastside at Leesburg, May 21, 2011. (ASHLEY BEYER/Freelance Photographer)
By Gerald Lacey
Staff Writer
Carver Heights Quarterback Club
May 21, 2012

LEESBURG - The 2012 FHSAA Spring Football Season will be coming to a close in a few days. After a couple of weeks of enduring Florida spring time temperatures soaring in the 90's, teams will now have a chance to see how much progress they have made in game conditions. Leesburg second year head coach Randy Trivers will take his Yellow Jackets squad on the road Thursday night to face Gainesville Eastside to see how they match up with the Alachua County School. This will be the first trip to Citizens Field/Milton Lewis Stadium at James F. Niblack Athletic Complex, for the Jackets since the 2008 season.

"I think you are going to have some exciting football for people to see," Trivers said.

For the second spring in a row Trivers will have to replace one of his coordinators. In 2011 Offensive coordinator Greg Malling left LHS to take a head coaching job in Wisconsin at powerhouse Arrowhead High School. This Spring Defensive Coordinator Curt Bradley has taken a head coaching job with Braden High School in Bradenton Florida. 

Eastside High School football coach Jeff Parker watches his team go through drills at spring practice. (CLEVELAND TINKER/Special to the Guardian)
Trivers and his coaching staff have used this spring to focus on  togetherness, being a smart team and staying disciplined. The Yellow Jackets were in playoff contention the past two seasons going to its final game. The Jackets finished the season 8-2 (2-2) barely missing the playoffs with their only losses coming to Orlando Maynard Evans (2011 FHSAA Class 7A Regional Semifinalist) and Clermont East Ridge (2011 FHSAA Class 7A Regional Finalist) Leesburg is seeking its eighth State Championship game appearance and first playoff game since 2007.

"All of our goals are still intact we want to be a playoff team," Trivers said in a interview with Frank Jolley on Friday Night Lights. "That's still very much a achievable goal for us so we are excited to be able to continue to improve, work together and go after that goal."

Jackets talk it over on the sideline during senior night. Ocala Lake Weir at Leesburg, November 4, 2011(By Ashley Beyer Freelance Photographer).
Both teams faced each other in the 2011 Spring game at Leesburg Memorial Field at Hubert O. Dabney Stadium. The game was halted with six minutes left due to bad weather with the score tied at 7-7. Eastside leads the all-time series between the teams 5-3.

Eastside's second year head coach Jeff Parker is instilling a winning attitude in his team during his second spring practice as coach of the Rams.

"I don't like to lose," Parker said.

"We are focusing on the kids competing hard and having a winning attitude about everything they do, taking nothing for granted, and working to fight as a unit," Parker said. "When they go out there on that field, they have to know that they have each other's back. We are trying to weed out any individual attitudes."

Junior Anthony Burch (DE, OLB) is one of the players who is leading the team with the new attitude.

"Most of us have been through the pain and suffering of the last two and three years, and we are seniors now and we already know what to expect and to go through, so we should be all right," said Burch, adding that he also takes being a leader seriously. "I am trying to be the best that I can be, and when I see the younger guys slacking off like I did when I was younger, I correct them because I have already been through that."

Eastside will work out of  a new offense installed by former eight year NFL player Willie Jackson (Gainesville P.K. Yonge, University of Florida, Washington Redskins, Atlanta Falcons, New Orleans Saints, Cincinnati Bengals, Jacksonville Jaguars, Dallas Cowboys). Jackson's son Sir Jackson is Eastside's quarterback and will be leading the new offense.

Sir Jackson said that the winning attitude has already set the tone for this spring and the upcoming season. According to the junior quarterback this team has some intestinal fortitude and has displayed it throughout the 2012 spring campaign. Jackson says this is one of the hardest working groups that he has ever played with.

"I think we have more hard working people than people who just want to talk, and I think that is going to make us better," said Jackson, adding that he takes being a leader seriously. "I am a hard worker and I always push my guys and I always encourage them to do better and dig deeper."

New Orleans Saints receiver Willie Jackson (Gainesville Eastside Offensive Coordinator) tied an NFL playoff record for touchdown receptions in a game, shared with nine others. He caught a 10-yard slant pass from Aaron Brooks for his first; a 49-yarder over Dexter McCleon' and his last on a slant pattern from 16 yards.

Willie Jackson's offense will try to take advantage of the athletic ability of his players. It is a pro style offense that will use multiple sets to try and create mismatches in the Leesburg defense. Last year the Rams ran the spread, but will run a lot of formations with one or two backs and tight ends this year.

"We are definitely going to get the ball to our playmakers," Parker said.

Leesburg's offense will have some new faces this spring. The Jackets will enter the game a little nicked up from one of the most intense spring practices in the history of Leesburg High School Football. The Jackets eleven are one of the smallest teams in FHSAA Class 7A football. For what this squad lacks in size they makeup for it with physical conditioning, speed, athletic ability and technique.

"Fundamentally we try to teach our kids to utilize what they have the best way they can, in terms of leverage and fundamental techniques", said Trivers." "We try to be smart with scheme and certainly things such as strength and stamina that come into play."

The biggest hole to fill on offense will be at Wide Receiver this spring. 2012 University of Miami (FL) signee D'Mauri Jones, Juillard Roberts and Jalen Dozier all have been lost to graduation, placing the wide receiver position up for grabs. Brian Jefferson, Adrian Falconer and Lee Bennett have had a great spring and will be counted on heavily in the fall. Bennett is very versatile and will be moved around so he may get the football in his hands more often this season.

Leesburg at Orlando Maynard Evans October 21, 2011 (By Ashley Beyer Freelance Photographer)
"If we have to throw it 30 times than that's what we will do," said Trivers on the Jackets weekly game plan on offense. "If we have to throw it 3 times than that's what we will do."

Another receiver to keep you eye on is Afernee Scott the brother of Jalen Dozier (D'Mauri Jones first cousin). He has great speed and is very dangerous in the open field giving the Jackets a game changer at that position.

Anthony Miller comes back at running back after a solid junior year, despite missing a couple of games due to injury. Miller averaged about six yards per carry last season and will be looked upon to be the workhorse of the backfield. Brad Scott and Travon Johnson will also get some carries in the game.

On the defensive side of the ball for the Rams they are led by Burch, sophomore Barry Johnson and junior Micheal Linton (6'1", 255 pounds). Expect to see some some solid play Eastside linebacking corps and secondary. The defense is the backbone of the Eastside team especially the defensive line.

Leesburg's defense will deal with the loss of 2012 High School Butkus Award winner Noor Davis. Davis is headed to California to play for the Stanford Cardinal. Without Davis in the lineup commanding double and triple team blocking schemes the Jackets will have to have some other players step up.

The Jackets also with will have to deal with the loss of last year's leading tackler Chase O'Donell (Thiel College). Leesburg has some studs on the defensive line in Tyler Reed, Devonte Williams and Adriel Handsborough and look to put a lot of pressure on the quarterback.

The linebacking core is led by Jordan Tucker who is being coveted by the University of Florida, University of Central Florida, University of Miami (FL), University of South Florida, Florida State University, and University of South Florida too name a few. Tucker is listed on the Orlando Sentinel Super 60 watchlist and is rated #50 in the Miami Herald High School Blog Class of 2013. With a strong spring game performance he will watch his list of college offers soar.

Austin Walker the teams second leading tackler last year returns and will add his senior leadership to the linebacking corp. Walker has a nose for the football and should have a big spring game performance. Devonte Williams, Jerrel Sims all have had great springs and will see plenty of playing time in Thursday's game. 

 Tavares at Leesburg, September 5, 2011. (ASHLEY BEYER/Freelance Photographer)

The secondary will have to deal with the loss of Trey Perry (Carson-Newman College) and Zach Mahan. Jermaine Gasden, Bryant "Mr. No" Benton and Demetric Blue help lead a solid secondary with plenty of experience under game conditions.

Eastside's kicking game will be led by returning starter Nick Fethire. Fethire will probably handle all the kicking duties, except for punting according to Parker.

Special teams is one of the Jackets strengths with Walker returning as punter. James Elridge who won the placekicking job as a sophomore last year returns and will handle the placekicking duties.

"I think one of the biggest differences this spring is that we are a more together football team and a more mentally tougher football team in a lot of ways," Trivers said. 

Overall Parker is pleased with how things have taken shape this spring with his Rams squad. He believes that the program is taking the right steps towards becoming a state powerhouse again.

This will be the first trip to Citizens Field/Milton Lewis Stadium at James F. Niblack Athletic Complex, for the Jackets since the 2008 season.
"You don't build anything overnight, it takes time to lay a foundation," Parker said. "We are seeing the fruits of what we did with these guys last year, and we are excited about the progress they have made."

This should be an exciting spring affair and both teams seem to be headed in the right direction.

School: Leesburg High School, Leesburg, Florida
Class-District: 7A-4
2011 Record: 8 -2, (2 -2)
Head Coach: Randy Trivers (2nd season)
Leesburg Coaching Record: 14-6
NCAA FBS Prospects: OLB/TE Jordan Tucker (6-3, 200)
Other top players: LB/PK Austin Walker (Sr.), RB Anthony Miller (Jr., 5-7, 185), DB Jermaine Gadsden (Jr., 5-11, 170),

Key Returnees: Jermaine Gasden, Jeremy Jones, Austin Walker, Lee Bennett, Anthony Miller, Bryant Benton, Demitric Blue, James Eldridge, Jordan Tucker, Chris Smith, Adriel Handsborough, Devonte Williams, Undra Mitchem Jr, Estader Maurepas, Cameron Jackson and Tyler Reed.

Top Newcomers: Brian Jefferson, Adrian Falconer, Brad Scott, Travon Johnson, Afernee Scott, Jerrel Sims

School: Gainesville Eastside High School, Gainesville, Florida
Class-District: 5A-5
2011 Record: 4-7, (2 -3)
Head Coach: Jeff Parker  (2nd season)
Gainesville Eastside Coaching Record: 3-7
Overall Coaching Record: 22-13 

Key Losses: Otis Mazon (Bellhaven University), Derek O’Neal (Bellhaven University)

Key Returnees: Anthony Burch (DE, OLB, JR), James Henderson (5'8", 240, OL), Sir Jackson (QB 5'11", 185, JR), Richard Johnson (C, 6'4", 280, SR), Jamari Walker (6'1", 190, RB, LB), Tracey Williams (FB, LB) and sophomore Barry Johnson (6'2", 240, DE, TE, JR). Seth Brown (6'5," 230 pounds TE), Michael Linton (6'1," 255 pounds DL, JR), Jesse Houston (5'11", 185, OL,SS,SR), Sean Scott (5'9", 185 LB), Kevin Jenkins (6'1", 320, LG, JR), Quintarvis King (5'11", 200, JR, MLB,OLB), James Scott (5'11", 210, DL,OL, JR)

Leesburg vs. Gainesville Eastside Series Records

1974 Leesburg 20, Gainesville Eastside 14

1975 Gainesville Eastside, 21 Leesburg 7

1976 Leesburg 57, Gainesville Eastside 7

1999 Gainesville Eastside, 12 Leesburg 7

2000 Gainesville Eastside, W Leesburg L

2005 Gainesville Eastside, 21 Leesburg 9  

2006 Gainesville Eastside, 13 Leesburg 7

2007 Leesburg 14 Gainesville Eastside 7

2008 Gainesville Eastside 20 Leesburg 0 


7 Playoff Appearances 3-7 All-Time Record 

State Championships 1927, 1929, 1934
State Runnerup 1928, 1969
District Championships 1969, 1971, 1992, 2007

1969 CLASS 2A District Playoffs: Leesburg 12, Auburndale 0 

1969 CLASS 2A Semifinals: Leesburg 36, Belle Glade 23 

1969 CLASS 2A Championship: Blake (Tampa) 27, Leesburg 6

CLASS 3A District Playoffs: Haines City 34, Leesburg 0 

1992 CLASS 4A District Playoffs: Leesburg 47, Land O’Lakes 0

1992 Class 4A Regional Playoffs: (Daytona Beach) Seabreeze 24, Leesburg 10

2000 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals:  New Smyrna Beach 34, Leesburg 0

2001 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals:  37 Palm Bay (Melbourne), Leesburg 0

2005 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals: Nease (Ponte Vedra Beach) 63, Leesburg 20

2007 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals: Columbia (Lake City) 21, Leesburg 0;

FHSAA Finals Record  0-1
FHSAA Tournament Record 3-7


12 Playoff Appearances, 10-12 All-Time Record

1978 CLASS 3A District Playoffs: St. Augustine 14, Eastside (Gainesville) 7

1979 CLASS 3A District Playoffs: Eastside (Gainesville) 35, North Marion (Citra) 21

1979 CLASS 3A Regional Playoffs: Oviedo 19, Eastside 7 (Gainesville)

1992 CLASS 3A District Playoffs: South Sumter (Bushnell) 12, Eastside (Gainesville) 0 

1995 CLASS 4A Regional First Round: Eastside (Gainesville) 33, Hernando (Brooksville) 7

1995 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals: Eustis 22, Eastside (Gainesville) 12

1997 CLASS 4A Regional First Round:Eastside (Gainesville) 23, Jones (Orlando) 20

1997 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals: Eastside (Gainesville) 24, Zephyrhills 0

1997 CLASS 4A Regional Semifinals: Raines 20, Eastside (Gainesville) 17

1998 CLASS 4A Regional First Round: Eastside (Gainesville) 65, Mount Dora 6

1998 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals: Eastside (Gainesville) 20, Crystal River 7

1998 CLASS 4A Regional Semifinals: Raines 26, Eastside (Gainesville) 19

1999 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals: Eastside (Gainesville) 33, Countryside (Clearwater) 0

1999 CLASS 4A Regional Semifinals: New Smyrna Beach 17, (Gainesville) Eastside 0

2004 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals: Leon (Tallahassee) 28, Eastside (Gainesville) 26

2005 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals: Eastside (Gainesville) 14, Ridgeview (Orange Park) 7

2005 CLASS 4A Regional Semifinals: Eastside (Gainesville) 35, Rockledge 7

2005 CLASS 4A Regional Finals: Nease 57, Eastside (Gainesville) 21

2006 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals: Eastside (Gainesville) 18, Columbia (Lake City) 15

2006 CLASS 4A Regional Semifinals: Seabreeze 28, Eastside (Gainesville) 6

2007 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals: Nease (Ponte Vedra Beach) 29, Eastside (Gainesville) 7

2008 CLASS 4A Regional Quarterfinals: Nease (Ponte Vedra Beach) 43, Eastside (Gainesville) 13