Summer Spotlight: Carol City Has The Talent To Win It All!

Larry Blustein
June 18, 2018 - 11:51 am

Larry Blustein

When you happen to be a team who competes in the nation’s toughest high school districts, your approach is way different than the rest.

While teams throughout Florida look toward a state championship run – if you compete in District 16-6A, it’s all about making the playoffs.

From Central to Norland, Hialeah-Miami Lakes and last year’s champion, Northwestern, competition is so great that rosters in this district are as talented as you will find anywhere in the country.

Two years ago, Aubrey Hill led Carol City to a state title before heading to FIU, joining Butch Davis. That left the coaching position open, and the list of applicants was indeed long.

Emerging from that list was Benedict Hyppolite. With a coaching career that included learning from the great Tim “Ice” Harris – Hyppolite – just 28 at the time – had shown that he can run a team after stints at Booker T. Washington, Miami Edison and his first head coaching job at Hallandale.

While the Chiefs fell short of returning to Orlando, Hyppolite and his coaching staff knew that adding some pieces for the 2018 season could make this program a true contender.

As we are now in the summer – and the race for Orlando is officially under way, Hyppolite and his football team are indeed one of the favorites to get back to Camping World Stadium, but it won’t be easy.

With a very tough schedule – including the “SEC” of high school districts – the talent is very much in place for a solid run.

After dismantling St. Petersburg Lakewood in the spring , the countdown to the start of the season has started.

DEFENSE, DEFENSE - AGAIN!

If you know this district and this program, everything revolves around defense. It always has.

This year, the Chiefs are quick and very talented – with key prospects all over the field.

It all begins up front with a quality line that features seniors Juwan James, Jamal Poittier and heavily recruited Malcolm Ray.

Junior Xavier Jones – and sophomores Sherrod Brown, Jonathan Jean and Ronald Preston are all promising.

After losing a number of quality linebackers, the Chiefs looked to plug in playmakers, and they have.

Seniors Dujuan Jackson, Khembrel Leon, Matthew Render, Christian Russell, Craig Atkinson and Travis Trimmings have the leadership and experience– while juniors Victor Covington, Willie Floyd and Darius Stokes are all emerging standouts.

The place where this program usually has as much talent as anyone is in the secondary – where the senior class is absolutely loaded.

Leading the way in the Class of 2019 group include heavily recruited Jarvis Brownlee, Nicholas Gifford, big time talent Gregory Reddick, Kamari Richardson and Amaru Teneus.

The future is very bright with juniors Joshua Ancrum, Andre Bent, Chester Fearon, James Hood, Keion Lewis and gifted Marcel Williams.

Even the sophomores will be counted on – with Vinnie Hampton, Travis McNicholas and Markeith Thomas.

MUCH IMPROVED OFFENSE

We all know that all the teams in the district play defense as well as anyone you will see nationally, but what about offense.

While the Chiefs were not considered an offensive machine in the past, things could change in 2018.

With the addition of record-setting 2019 quarterback Daniel Richardson from Booker T. Washington, things look very good.

The Chiefs also have Monsignor Pace senior transfer Lorenzo Floyd and sophomore Emile Bien-Aime.

There are very few programs in the country that will have a running game like the Chiefs have.

The depth begins with the senior class – where nationally-rated Nayquan Wright returns along with 2019 - Tristan Parks.

Junior Tywan Cash and big time sophomores Tyrique Baxter, Darius Chester (Killian transfer) and Miramar transfer Katravis Geter will all be difference makers.

The receiving corps once again this season will be looking for playmakers – and seniors Thiau Jones-Bell and Amari Johnson – could be those players.

In addition, the junior class boasts and Elijah Goree, Maxeau Joseph, Deonta Nairn, Earl Pope and DeAndre Stafford. Keep your eye on sophomores Timothy Lewis and Torrae Norris as well.

If this team is to move the ball against the elite teams, it will all start up front –where just one senior, Danickson Joseph, returns.

Juniors Richard Dunkley and Loucius Israel will need to learn fast. So will sophomores Amari Bannister, Albert Fletcher, Mekhi Prospere and Giovanni Terry.

Catch the South Florida High School Sports Radio Show each week on WQAM (560AM - https://wqam.radio.com/media/podcast/south-florida-high-school-sports-radio). For the past 11 years, the players and coaches who are making the headlines, join the program. You will learn a lot about football recruiting!