Ernie Ayers (pictured above) will lift the lid on his 38th season tonight as head coach of the Sand Creek Aggies. The winningest coach in league history has more than 250 career wins, including a 168 in TCC play.
His Aggies will take on Reading tonight. Ayers has announced that senior Michaja Wilson will start at quarterback. He and speedy sophomore Alec Muck were locked in a camp battle for the starting spot.
Look for Muck to be a big part of the ‘Creek offense. He was a state champion in the 200 and top three finisher in the 100.
“We’re going to get him the ball,” Ayers said.
Elsewhere around the TCC, BD has settled on Dan Marotz as its starting QB for tonight’s season opener. Marotz was set up to be the Patriots starting QB last season but was injured in the BD scrimmage, opening up a spot for Justis Kimerer. This year, the tables are turned as Kimerer is out with an injury and Marotz, now a senior, will start tonight. BD will play Lenawee Christian.
Whiteford is coming off a 10-3 season in which the Bobcats advanced to the state semifinals for the first time in school history. Quarterback Thomas Eitniear (1,077 yards) and running back Jesse Kiefer (2,037 career rushing yards) lead the Bobcats into the opener at home against Blissfield. A new, double-decker press box will be dedicated at a special 6:40 p.m. ceremony.
Summerfield was a playoff team last year and returns 1,000-yard quarterback Trent Schankin and has one of the biggest lineman in recent Bulldog memory in Jacob Vigliotti (6-4, 325).
Morenci has a new coach in Jacob Bovee, a former Bulldog player, but a group of talented skill position players back in QB Tyler VanBrandt, WR/RB Anthony Thomas, RB Garrett Smith and RB Harley McCaskey. Morenci plays Pittsford tonight.
Whitmore Lake is the only other TCC team with a new coach as Brian Boron takes over for Todd Pennycuff. The Trojans have 28 kids on its roster, but no JV team. Whitmore Lake, which plays East Jackson tonight, will be led by three-year varsity running back/linebacker Spencer Iaquinto; Drew Beier, a transfer from Perrysburg, Ohio; and Austin Tanner, a team captain.
Madison has three-year starting QB Connor Mellon back calling signals and back Donovan Slates seems primed for a big campaign. Madison opens the season against Royal Oak Shrine.
Clinton coach Scott McNitt is starting his 10th season as the Redskin head coach and his success has been extra-ordinary. McNitt is 55-8 in TCC play and haven’t lost a league game since 2011. The Redskins are touting this is a rebuilding year, however, with the loss of Mathew Sexton, one of the league’s greatest all-time players. Clinton plays Manchester in its traditional season opener.