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Montini Broncos
By David Oberhelman | Daily Herald Staff
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Published: 8/26/2011 12:32 AM

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Part of a coach's job is to put his team in position to succeed.

Chris Andriano has Montini in position to challenge for a third straight state championship.

"It's great to have that kind of notoriety, but this is a new season and whatever we did in the past is just experience to hopefully help us keep the winning going in the playoffs," said the dean of DuPage County head coaches.

He seems to have the Broncos ready to do so.

Atop the list are two of the top 10 players in the Class of 2012 as ranked by "Edgy" Tim O'Halloran of Rivals.com. Iowa-bound Jaleel Johnson, a 6-foot-4, 300-pound defensive tackle, transferred in from St. Joseph last spring; Nebraska recruit Jordan Westerkamp's 89 receptions for 1,631 yards and 21 touchdowns in 2010 broke Montini season records once held by his father, Bob.

"He is a playmaker," Andriano said of Jordan, who had nearly 20 Division I offers to choose from. "He's bigger and faster and stronger than last year. He looks awesome."

Also transfering in was two-year Marian Catholic starting quarterback John Rhode. In 2010 Rhode completed a reported 52 of 123 passes for 801 yards, 9 touchdowns and 3 interceptions. When he directed Montini's spread offense at Wheaton Warrenville South's 7-on-7 competition this summer the Broncos were but a failed 2-point conversion from beating Maine South in the championship match.

Rhode fractured the thumb on his throwing hand in Montini's intersquad scrimmage. He's likely out until Week 4, with last year's sophomore quarterback, athletic Mark Gorogianis, starting in the interim.

The Broncos return two starting linemen, left tackle Jim Lowery and center Brian Piper, and two good receivers, Anthony Taylor and Joey Borsellino.

Andriano returns only one defensive starter, linebacker Franklin Bruscianelli, and he said depth needs to develop on both the offensive and defensive lines. But he is anticipating the Broncos to affect the 5A race.

"The enthusiasm and prospect of another great year, it's really high," Andriano said. "I mean, everybody is really geared up."

Dave Oberhelman

The breakdown

Coach: Chris Andriano (33rd year, 232-115).

2010 record: 12-2, 5-0, first in the Suburban Christian Conference Blue Division.

Top players: Fred Beaugard (DL, 6-3, 250, jr.), Joey Borsellino (WR, 5-10, 170, jr.), Tate Briggs (OL, 6-4, 280, jr.), Franklin Bruscianelli (LB, 6-0, 220, sr.), Jaleel Johnson (DL, 6-4, 300, sr.), Mike Kaiser (DL, 5-11, 195, sr.), Jim Lowery (OL, 6-4, 280, sr.), Brian Piper (OL, 5-11, 205), John Rhode (QB, 6-0, 195, sr.), Josh Rogers (DL, 6-2, 230, sr.), Anthony Taylor (WR, 6-0, 180, sr.), Jordan Westerkamp (WR, 6-1, 200, sr.).

Schedule

Fri, Aug 26 Palatine 7:30 p.m.

Sat, Sep 3 @ Loyola 1:30 p.m.

Fri, Sep 9 Marmion 7:30 p.m.

Fri, Sep 16 @ Marian Central 7 p.m.

Fri, Sep 23 Aurora Christian 7:30 p.m.

Fri, Sep 30 St. Francis 7:30 p.m.

Fri, Oct 7 @ St. Edward 7:30 p.m.

Sat, Oct 15 @Walther Lutheran 1 p.m.

Fri, Oct 21 Wheaton Academy 7:30 p.m.