COACH — GREGG WILCOX (6th year, 29-21)
CONFERENCE — ECC Division III
PLAYOFF CLASS — S (co-op)
2018 RECORD — 6-4
2019 OPENER — Sept. 20 at Ledyard, 6 p.m.
TEAM WEBSITES — Maxpreps
Cory Carr, OL/DL; Jayden Ellis, OL/DL; John Falco, G/T; Stephen Sims, C/DL; Shamari Richards, DL
Coach Gregg Wilcox expects his squad, which yielded 14 points or less in five of its games last season, to be strong defensively and improve its production offensively.
Senior quarterback Andrew Koziol is beginning his third season as a starter for the Wolverines, who begin their first season as a co-op team with Wheeler of North Stonington.
The strong-armed Koziol was a first-team All-ECC Division III quarterback for the Wolverines last season. He threw for 1,138 yards and 11 touchdowns and also added 322 yards rushing with three more touchdowns.
“(Koziol) had a pretty good year last year and I expect him to have a really good year this year,” Wilcox said. “He knows the system well and he has progressed really well each season.”
Koziol has a pair of experienced receivers with breakaway speed in fellow All-ECC senior Logan Chappell and junior Anthony Franklin returning.
“Logan and Anthony have been out there three years for us and they are on the same page with our quarterback,” Wilcox said. “They are good, quick receivers.”
There’s also versatile senior CJ Mattson, who returns after an All-ECC D3 season at receiver. He also lines up in the backfield alongside big senior Michael Sims, another three-year starter.
Graduation claimed all of the squad’s starting offensive and defensive linemen from its 2018 season, however, among them All-ECC D3 picks Stephen Sims, Jonathan Falco, Shamari Richards and Jayden Ellis.
“We are relying on some young players to step up on the line,” Wilcox said. “If they do that, we’ll be fine.”
Leading the defense will be Sims at linebacker and Chappell in the secondary. Both were All-ECC Division III defensive picks last year.
“I like what I see from our defense,” Wilcox said. “We’re a good defensive team and we should have a good passing game. Our running backs are also getting better as our offensive line progresses.”
Griswold/Wheeler has another week to get some extra practice in. The new co-op doesn’t kick off the season until a Week 2 date at Ledyard. In addition to their ECC rivals, Griswold/Wheeler picked up East Catholic in the Scheduling Alliance.
Overall, the schedule is favorable for a postseason run if the Wolverines’ pieces come together. Despite a few close calls, Griswold hasn’t reached the state playoffs since 2006.
Sept. 20 — at Ledyard,* 6 p.m.
Sept. 28 — at Bacon Academy,* Noon
Oct. 4 — STONINGTON,* 6:30 p.m.
Oct. 18 — EAST CATHOLIC, 6:30 p.m.
Oct. 25 — at Montville,** 6 p.m.
Nov. 1 — at Waterford,* 6 p.m.
Nov. 8 — WINDHAM,** 6:30 p.m.
Nov. 15 — CREC CO-OP,** 6:30 p.m.
Nov. 28 — PLAINFIELD,** 10 a.m.
Home games in CAPS
Scheduling Alliance games in bold