Timberlake, coming off its first state championship in school history, will try to replace the 10 seniors who led the team to the title.
"We graduated a lot, but we still have some kids who can play," Timberlake coach Brian Severin said. "We have players we have confidence in."
The biggest question mark the team faces is on its offensive line.
"Our skill people are going to be fine, but we need find someone who can go block," Severin said. "Everyone thinks we won't be good because of all the kids we graduated, but we're going to surprise some people."
Youth movement at Coyle
Coyle coach Shane Weathers expects his group of young but experienced players to mature this year. He hopes that translates into more victories.
"We had a really young ballclub last year, and this year we're still only going to have three seniors," he said. "We have lots of experienced players, and we want to build on that experience."
Weathers is looking forward to his team's Sept. 10 game against Medford. Last year, Coyle beat Medford by catching a game-winning touchdown as time expired.
"They're going to be gunning for us this year," he said.
Covington-Douglas looks to Sterling for leadership
Senior Dylan Sterling has done it all for Covington-Douglas, from playing quarterback and defensive back to returning punts and kickoffs. He even rushed for more than 1,500 yards last season.
Coach Brian Smith said Sterling does a little bit of everything for the squad, which lost only four seniors from last year. The team returns their top three rushers and top four receivers from last year's team that finished 7-5.
District C-3 coaches' poll 1. Deer Creek-Lamont (10-3) 2. Covington-Douglas (7-5) 3. Timberlake (14-0) 4. Southwest Covenant (4-6) 5. Waukomis (2-8) 6. Coyle (4-6) 7. Medford (2-8) 8. Carney (NR) Note: 2009 record in parentheses