Coach: Tim Holt (ninth season)
Key returners: Drew Paszotta, jr., sprints; Dre Brown, so., sprints; Marc Dubrick, sr., distance; Tyler Peterson, sr., hurdles; Lee Parrish, sr., hurdles
Impact newcomers: Eriq Torrey, so.; Jonathan Bell, jr.; Isaac Hietanen, jr.; Jared Smith, jr.; James Robinson
Outlook: The Barbs managed a third-place finish at the conference indoor meet and were only five points behind Geneseo for second. Sprints look to be the strongest aspect for DeKalb this season. Dre Brown was the team MVP last year as a freshman and will look to score even more points in the sprints as a sophomore.
Holt’s take: “We have more depth in our lineup. Our numbers went up from about 40 members last season to 65 this year. We have some good sprinters. We also have very good distance runners.”
Coach: Brent Bacon (second season)
2012 accomplishments: Won G-K Invitational, defended team title at Rocket Relays
Key returners: Danny Thorsen, sr., throws; Gabe Williams, sr., sprints; Tim Benvenuti, sr., jumps; Jonah Callahan, jr., hurdles
Impact newcomers: Chad Jureczek, sr., sprints; Chance Franckowiak, fr., 400; Ian Fell, fr., HJ; Jared Barton, fr., HJ
Outlook: The Cogs return a solid core of athletes even after graduating a big senior class from last season. Bacon is excited about his depth, giving him a lot of options to change up his lineup and rest people if necessary. He said the underclassmen possess a lot of “unpolished talent.”
Bacon’s take: We have a few guys returning, but also a few guys who have never done track before and waited until their senior year. This freshman class is huge. We have 17 freshmen out this year. They each are exciting to watch.”
Coach: Greg Burks (12th season)
2012 accomplishments: Bill Weissinger took ninth at state in the high jump.
Key returners: Michael Bayler, sr., 400 / TJ; Mack Carls, sr., SP, Discus; Andrew Klambauer, sr., LJ / TJ; Bill Weissinger, sr., HJ; T.J. Gavin, jr., sprints / 300 hurdles; Ty Binkley, so., SP / Discus; Jeremey Perales, so., distance
Impact newcomers: Christian Johnsen, sr.; Jared Madden, sr.; Zach Michels, sr.; Austin Planthaber, jr.; Connor Nelson, so.; Sean Gavin, fr.; Nic Mann, fr.; Zach McNanna, fr.; Kobe Newman, fr.
Outlook: Weissinger will hope to get back to the state meet again in his senior season. Michels and Madden were part of the senior core that led H-BR’s soccer team to state and the basketball team to back-to-back Little Ten titles. Their athleticism should be a welcome addition to the Royals’ squad.
Burks’ take: “We have some returning athletes that have been big point scorers the past several years. We have some new talent also. It will be interesting to see what the newcomers can do as the season goes along.”
Coach: Dane Bell (ninth season)
2012 accomplishments: Jake Gullstrand took seventh at the Class 1A meet in the 400.
Key returners: Jake Gullstrand, sr., sprints; Gavin Eberly, jr., hurdles; Mitch Lave, sr., relays
Impact newcomers: Shawn Agler, fr., sprints; Evan Ostrander, fr., distance; Jonathan Farnsworth, fr., middle distance
Outlook: Gullstrand has high expectations in the 200 and 400. He’ll hope to at least get back to state and improve on his seventh-place finish in the 400. A smaller team will allow some of Indian Creek’s new freshmen to quickly earn varsity experience.
Bell’s take: “With a very low turnout this year we will be looking to compete against many schools on the team level. We will be shooting for the top individual performances we can manage.”
Coach: Eric Baron (eighth season)
2012 accomplishments: Undefeated in dual meets, Kane County champions, Class 2A Rochelle Sectional champions. 11th in Class 2A state meet.
Key returners: Dylan Pennington, sr., 200; Conor Johnson, sr., 800; Kory Harner, sr., pole vault; Brandon Cottier, sr., 100 / 200; Dylan Nauert, jr., 100 / 300H; Nathaniel Kucera, jr., 400 / 800; Nate Dyer, jr., SP / discus; Kyle Carter, jr., 800; Brandon Bishop, jr., 100 / 200; Luis Acosta, jr.
Impact newcomers: Drew David, jr.; Brandon Cruz, fr.; Tanner Robertson, fr.
Outlook: Kaneland returns 10 state qualifiers from last season’s team, including a number of members from the Knights’ three relays that made it down state. Dylan Nauert should compete for a state championship in the 300 hurdles after taking sixth last year and
Baron’s take: “We should be contending for a title in any meet we compete in this year.”
Coach: Pete Piccony (sixth season)
2012 accomplishments: Sycamore qualified three individuals and two relays for the Class 2A state meet.
Key returners: David Emmert, sr., distance; Dion Hooker, so., sprints; Mark Stice, jr., distance; Logan Wright, jr., jumps;
Outlook: Dion Hooker and Mark Stice both got to the second day of the state tournament as underclassmen last year. Hooker was the fastest freshman in the 100 and also competed on the Spartans’ 4x400 relay.
Piccony’s take: “Solid young team. Varsity needs to lead and young athletes will need to step up and take some leadership roles. Core of team is [sophomores] and juniors.”