The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

High School Sports

August 29, 2013

Justice takes over as Raiders’ head coach

— BRADSHAW — A new era is underway at River View High School. Mitch Estep, who guided the Raiders the first three years of the school’s existence has retired, replaced by assistant Gehrig Justice.

River View has made the West Virginia Class AA playoffs each year they have stepped onto the gridiron. Justice hopes the run continues, but fans watching the Raiders play will see a different style of football.

“I love the wing-T, but I don’t think our personnel fits the wing-T,” Justice said. “Next year if it does and the year after that it does, again I will go to it. Don Shula, the great coach for the Miami Dolphins in the ‘70s had (Larry) Czonka and they were a ower run team. Then Marino comes along and they throw it all over the place. That’s what my philosophy is.”

Justice said his offense will be a lot like the one of Rich Rodriguez when he was at West Virginia University, a run-spread option and the featured backs will be Jordan Wilson (5’4 152 Jr.) and Greg Marshall (5’8 215 Sr.)

“If you want to make a comparison to West Virginia, Wilson is a Noel Devine/Steve Slaton type of guy and Marshall is that Owen Schmitt type of kid,” Justice pointed out.

Joseph McClanahan (6’ 197 Sr.) and Tyree Baker (5’9 160 So.) are the wide receivers and the tight end is Demetrius Duff (6’1 204 Sr.).

The O-line is big and experienced. Chris Mullins (6’3 219 Sr.) is the center, flanked by guards Tyler Blankenship (5’7 279 Sr.) and Tyler Walker (5’11 292 Jr.). The tackles are Roger Bolen (5’9 235 Jr.) and Steven Bowman (5’11 245 Jr.).

“Defensively we’ll be in a 4-4 base but we’re going to switch it up as much as possible,” Justice said. “On defense we want to attack. We like to blitz and bring people. We will change it up as much as we can to try to cause some havoc but it’s basically a 4-4 with different adjustments.”

Along the defensive line Walker and Blankenship will be the tackles with Bowman getting into the mix. L.T. Horne (5’11 200 Sr.) is the nose tackle with Marshall, McClanahan and Chris Mullins (6’3 219 Sr.) rotating in the defensive end positions.

Josh Click (6’2 184 Sr.) and Duff are middle linebackers, with Jeremy Crigger 5’8 173 So.) and Justin Ward (5’6 164 Jr.) on the outside.

The defensive backfield will include Wilson, Baker, Austin Keen (5’11 142 Jr.), Matthew Thornsbury (5’6 132 Jr.) and Cody Howie (6’1 174 Fr.).

There is one new team on the Raiders’ schedule for 2013 as Buffalo Putnam replaces Mingo Central. River View opens the season against  Mount View.

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