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Scarsdale Football Coach Inspires Team To Excel

SCARSDALE, N.Y. -- Jacob Cannon understands the main reason why the Scarsdale varsity football program is a rising power in Section 1 -- head coach Andrew Verboys.

“Coach V. has changed the program by taking it by its roots and rebuilt it,” said the 6-foot-3, 250-pound Cannon. “He cares about the kids. People don’t know how hard he works for this program.”

The players have seen this and applied it to their work ethic. As a result, Scarsdale, the smallest school in Class AA, is prepared to take the next step in its progression. Scarsdale has qualified for the Section 1 Class AA Championship playoffs the last two years. Even though the Raiders were seeded fourth and lost each year to the top seed, they won a bowl game in 2010 and played in a bowl game last year.

Scarsdale, inspired by Verboys, began preparation for the 2012 season once the bowl game was over last year. Cannon said that Verboys was in the weight room every day supervising his players and providing workout regiments for the team. The team was determined to erase the memory of the double-overtime bowl-game loss to White Plains.

“Coach V. has instilled the confidence in us that we are a good football team,” said Cannon, who will start at guard and defensive tackle.

Cannon is a captain along with classmates John Cappello and Andrew Verboys, the coach's son. Cappello will line up at fullback and defensive end and Verboys returns at quarterback and will play outside linebacker.

The senior class also includes returning starters -- Daniel Abramowitz (nose guard), Connor Adams (middle linebacker), Matthew McCann (guard), Patrick Clarke (wide receiver) and Robert Plummer (running back). Junior Eric Berman is back at linebacker.

With starting positions being contested, Cannon said practice has been intense.

“I see a lot of competition with guys trying to get on the field,” said Cannon, following Wednesday morning’s practice. “These have been the best practices I’ve been involved in because the intensity of players going at it like they do in a game. Fighting for that spot makes the guy across from you work that much harder and makes him that much better.”

Cannon and his line mates will provide the holes for the younger Verboys and Plummer, when they run. Verboys is one of the elite quarterbacks in Section 1 who can hurt teams either with his arm or legs.

Scarsdale hosts Clarkstown North in the season-opener at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 8.

“We’ve been together since the winter, pushing each other,” Cannon said. “It is about being one team, playing together and being a cohesive unit. We trust each other on the field to do the right thing.”

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