Bethlehem opens its season Friday at Schenectady.
Head coach: Jim Smith
Key veterans: Luke Weaver (wide receiver), Michael Chaires (running back/defensive back), Joe Zappone (running back), Joe Rajczak (linebacker/fullback), Joe Vellano (offensive line/defensive line), Chris Ramsey (linebacker/offensive line), Dan Frost (offensive line/defensive line)
Key newcomer: Jimmy O'Brien (quarterback)
Outlook: The Brothers made noise during the regular season last year winning six of their seven games before losing to Shaker in the Sectional quar-terfinals. To match that mark, CBA will need its junior class to take charge. "Our key will be how quickly our juniors pick up the offense," said Smith. "Right now, our defense is a little ahead of our offense."
Though CBA gets to rekindle its rivalries with its Big 10 opponents, Smith said he prefers having the two-division format. "It's a little easier to know who's in and who's out of the playoffs," he said.
The Brothers open their season Friday against Section III power Henninger at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse.
Colonie Garnet Raiders
Head coach: Mike Ambrosio
Key veterans: Heath Furbeck (running back/defensive back), Edsall Walker (tight end), Mike Kaiser (offensive line), Jeff Patterson (offensive line), Blake DiPace (offensive line)
Key newcomers: Tom Duff (quarterback), Jim Kehrer (tailback).
Outlook: The Garnet Raiders graduated several key offensive specialists including quarterback Hunter Moffatt, tailback Chris Wiley and most of their receivers. "It's going to be more of a team thing this year," said Ambrosio. "There aren't going to be any stars. I think everybody's going to have to contribute."
Colonie gets tested right away by hosting Saratoga Friday, but Ambrosio said every game will be tough. "They're all quality teams. If you're not playing your 'A' game, somebody's going to beat you," he said.
Columbia Blue Devils
Head coach: Anthony Servidone
Key veterans: Jeff McCormick (fullback/linebacker), Bob Sommerville (offensive line/defensive end), Sean Weber (offensive line/linebacker), Mark Herrington (offensive line/defensive line), Nick Harrington (wide receiver/defensive back)