An experienced backfield will lead Rancho Cotate into a big test on Saturday night, as the Cougars head to Sacramento for their season opener against Sac High.
In the first meeting between the schools last season, Rancho Cotate escaped with a 16-12 victory, kicking off a successful season which ended with a heart-breaking section semifinal 7-2 loss to Marin Catholic, a game in which quarterback Jared Stocker did not play due to concussion protocol. Stocker is back for his senior year, as is backfield mate Rasheed Rankin. Meanwhile, the Cougars showed growth up front in last week's scrimmage.
"Our offensive and defensive line really stood out in our scrimmage. They were our question marks going into this season because of graduating talent, and they looked solid," said Rancho Cotate coach Gehrig Hotaling. "This week, we need to take care of our bodies, hydrate all week to prepare for temperature around 100 degrees at kickoff, and play both tough and physical while not turning the ball over."
The Cougars will be facing an athletic Dragons' team on Saturday at Sacramento City College, with 6-foot-4 senior quarterback Quantrell Jackson, Jr. leading the way for the offense, along with senior running back Deyvon Drayton.
"We need to contain their running back and not let him shake loose or score on explosive runs," Hotaling added.
Saturday's game kicks off at 7:15 pm.