But before that can happen, coach Shane Queen has some talent to replace on the defensive side of the ball.
Gone are the likes of all-state performers Shaun Daniels and Hakeem Sawyer at linebacker, and Eghosa Agboughae on the defensive line. The Warriors will have only three starters returning — defensive backs Cameron Albright (43 tackles, four interceptions) and Latrell Gibbs (three interceptions), along with linebacker Jalil Kuku (67 tackles, eight sacks).
That’s OK with Queen, because he said his team has been in this position before.
“Many of last year’s starters had played on the JV the year before,” he said. “(This spring), we had a lot of surprises on defense. We had a lot of good reps. We hope to have some of those JV players replace those guys again this year.”
In fact, two of the spots may have already been claimed. Queen said defensive end Scotty Cartledge and linebacker Myles Price each had great springs and are expected to make impacts this fall.
If the defense, which allowed a Region 4AAAAAA-low 20.6 points per game a year ago, can come close to that tally again, then the North Cobb have another opportunity to make a long playoff run.
All-state quarterback Tyler Queen will return for his junior season after helping make the Warriors’ offense the most prolific the county has ever seen by averaging 41 points per game. Shane Queen said his son has had a good offseason after throwing for 2,607 yards a 23 touchdowns, running for 925 yards and 20 scores, and leading North Cobb to an 11-3 record.
He also said Tyler has gotten bigger.
As a sophomore, Tyler Queen played at 6-foot-2, 220 pounds. Heading into the summer, Shane Queen said Tyler is now closer to 6-4, 230, and earlier this spring he picked up his first offer from a major-conference school — North Carolina.
The offense lost a couple of all-state players, too, in wide receiver Xavier Borishade and kicker A.J. Borduin, and the team will have to find four new starters on the offensive line. But Tyler Queen will have two of his main targets back in receiver Albright (21 catches, 295 yards, two touchdowns) and running back J’Vonte Herrod (974 yards, 15 touchdowns). Queen will also have his center, Ernie McQuade, back to help keep him upright.