Moeller Football Poised for A Big Season
August 9, 2012Cincinnati Moeller High School
by Tom Ramstetter & Tony Trimble, Cincinnati Enquirer
The Greater Catholic League South is perennially stacked with state title contenders and college football prospects, but the 2012 version of the Moeller Crusaders seems to stand out with several key players returning after a league title and run to the Region 4 final in 2010.
“If we stay healthy with all the returning starters that we have and a big senior class, we have a chance to be good,” Moeller coach John Rodenberg said. “We just need to keep building on what I’ve been preaching the last five years.”
Moeller is the preseason No. 1 in Ohio according to Rivals.com. Moeller is also ranked No. 14 nationally in the USA Today Super 25 preseason rankings.
The Crusaders, playing their 50th season of football, will have impact players all over the field.
“We all have two or three Division I guys,” La Salle coach Tom Grippa said. “Moeller has more than that. They have a Division I player at every position, I think.”
Senior linebacker Shane Jones committed verbally to Michigan State, senior offensive lineman Alex Gall to Miami (Fla.) and senior tight end Evan Jansen to Indiana.
There will be more commitments.
That allotment of talent makes Moeller the clear favorite to win the GCL South, and perhaps the favorite to win its first region title since 1997. But a lot can happen in a tough league.
“You could always throw the names into a hat and shake them up, and get a different winner every year,” St. Xavier coach Steve Specht said. “But I think Moeller returns the most key guys.”
Specht’s Bombers stopped Moeller short of its 14th regional title last season, 35-21. The Crusaders had beaten St. Xavier 27-24 during the regular season.
Now the goals are to repeat as GCL South champions, get back to the regional final and have a chance to play for the school’s eighth big-school state title.
“Just stay on course, take it one game at a time and have faith that we can get there,” Rodenberg said.