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2020 MIC Football Preview Series: Warren Central

By: MIC Network

2020 MIC Football Preview Series: Warren Central

With schools reopening on July 6, hundreds of high school football players will return to the gridiron to prepare for the upcoming season. Over the next few weeks, we’ll go in depth on each school in the MIC and what each team will look like come Aug. 21.

Warren Central Warriors

Last season: 8-4 (5-2 vs MIC opponents)

Recap: Coming off an undefeated state title run in 2018, Warren Central was determined to avoid the proverbial letdown in 2019. Offensive juggernauts David Bell, Romeir Elliott and Jayden George graduated, leaving the team short of dynamic playmakers. Head coach Jayson West turned to Cobe Moore – a tight end who had not taken a meaningful snap at quarterback since his freshman year – to lead the offense.

Warren Central had a fair share of highs and lows during the 2019 season. After starting the season 3-1, the Warriors were on the losing end of a thrilling Circle City showdown at Ben Davis. Three weeks later, Warren Central was shut out on the road to Carmel – the first time the Warriors were held scoreless since 1999. Still, Warren Central clinched a share of the MIC title at the end of the regular season with a 5-2 conference record.

One year after winning a thrilling semi-state game against Center Grove, Warren Central fell short against the Trojans in the regional round, losing 28-14. All things considered, it was another successful season for West and company.

Key Losses:

Cobe Moore (QB): Moore did an admirable job as the team’s starting quarterback, considering he found out he would be moved to quarterback just weeks before the beginning of the season. He threw for nearly 1,600 yards, tossing 18 touchdowns and only five interceptions. Moore will stay in town and continue his football career at the University of Indianapolis.

Marquise Cross (DE): Cross was one of the most productive defensive linemen in the MIC. The veteran defensive lineman lived in the backfield, leading the team with 12 tackles-for-loss and team-high nine sacks. Cross will continue his football career at Division II Tiffin University.

RJ Wells (RB/DB): Wells made one of the biggest sacrifices for Warren Central in his final year. One of the few returning starters shifted from defensive back to starting tailback to provide a boost on offense. Wells was efficient when he had the ball in his hands, averaging 5.3 yards per carry last season. He will continue his football career at Division II Grand Valley State.

Key Returnees:

Mikal Clarke (WR/TE): The hybrid wide receiver/tight end is one of the lone returning starters on offense. Clarke only caught 18 passes for 215 yards, but he also hauled in four touchdowns last season. Keep an eye on Clarke as he takes on a more prominent role on offense this season.

Jaden Perkins (DL): Perkins is one of the few returning starters on the defensive line. The rising senior was productive in his junior season, totaling seven tackles-for-loss and six sacks. With Marquise Cross graduating, Perkins will likely demand more attention from opposing offensive linemen.

Andrew Nelson (LB): Nelson filled up the stat sheet in his first season as a starting linebacker. The junior finished second on the team in tackles (60) and tackles for loss (8.5) and even tallied four sacks. Nelson should be the leader for a young, but experienced defense this season for Warren Central.

Schedule:
8/21: at Center Grove
8/28: at Louisville Trinity
9/4: at North Central
9/11: vs Lawrence Central
9/18: vs Ben Davis
9/25: at Pike
10/2: vs Lawrence North
10/9: vs Carmel
10/16: vs Columbus Sycamore (OH)

One matchup to watch: 8/21 at Center Grove – Since this MIC matchup was moved to week one of the regular season in 2013, Warren Central has won 5-of-7, including four wins in row dating back to 2016. This year’s season opener will be more difficult than in year’s past. Center Grove will be the host and returns more talent.

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