Mentor Football 2023

cardzfan1234

Well-known member
Mentor is coming off a season in which they finished 9-4 overall (6-3 in the regular season, 4-1 in the GCC). The team had six straight wins that included turning the tables in winning the rematch against Medina. Mentor's season would come to an end against the eventual state champions, St Edward. The team was very senior-heavy, especially on defense. First-team All-District seniors include WR/DB Jacob Snow, DB Caleb Pohto, WR Jordan Stapleton, four year starting DE Brenan Vernon, and LB Jack Geduldig. Seniors earning Second-team All-District included RB Mitchell Waite, LB Collin Orosz, WR Holden Cerny, OL Tony Pastore, and LB Kadyn Burkholder. The Class of 2023 was a deep class with lots of important players that won't be easy to replace.

The biggest name returning for 2023 is QB Scotty Fox. After getting some fill-in action as a freshman in 2021, Fox was given the full reigns of the position this past season. Experiencing some ups and downs expected of a sophomore QB, Fox eventually found his way and put together some strong performances. Since the top four producing receivers all graduate, that will put more pressure on Fox to elevate his game and lead the offense. That won't be easy to elevate his game after throwing for over 3,000 yards in 2022 to go along with 32 total touchdowns.

Offensively, there were some youngsters that contributed at times during the season. Last year we saw freshman (lineman JoJo LoDuca and receiver Justen Hodge) get some opportunities. Hodge even had a receiving touchdown against Medina in the playoff rematch. RB Mason Coughlin and WR Austin VanHuss are Class of 2025 players that are returning varsity lettermen that should be some of Fox's top weapons next season.

In terms of coaching, Matt Gray enters his fourth season as head coach. One major coaching change is the retirement of longtime defensive coordinator, Jim Funk. Mentor hasn't announced his replacement that I know of yet. This new hire will be a key part of the potential for change and improvement in the defensive culture. Defensively, this will be a big transition as the team often started 9 or even 10 seniors.

And finally, this is another season in which there are changes in the conference. I won't do the research (yet), but I would be that over the past 25 years, Mentor has had 20 different conference schedules. For 2023, we see a return of Shaker to the GCC. We also will see Mentor playing in the same league with Cleveland Heights since Mentor left the LEL back in 2010.
 
Last edited:

MentorGrad2002

Well-known member
Schedule for 2023

Week 1 : 08/18 A Massillon Jackson
Week 2: 08/25 H Cleveland St. Ignatius
Week 3: 09/01 A Painesville Riverside
Week 4: 09/08 H Medina
Week 5: 09/15 A Cleveland Heights
Week 6: 09/22 A Solon
Week 7: 09/29 H Shaker Heights
Week 8: 10/06 H Brunswick
Week 9: 10/13 A Strongsville
Week10: 10/20 H Euclid
 

MentorGrad2002

Well-known member
And finally, this is another season in which there are changes in the conference. I won't do the research (yet), but I would be that over the past 25 years, Mentor has had 20 different conference schedules. For 2023, we see a return of Shaker to the GCC. We also will see Mentor playing in the same league with Cleveland Heights since Mentor left the LEL back in 2010.
Building off of this last point , Solon will be in the GCC for one more year in football in 2023. Their other sports were allowed an early release for the Suburban League a year early.


The extremely petty part is this quote :

"In response to the GCC's decision, at least a few SL schools are considering discontinuing non-league games against that conference in other sports, but Medina County's Wadsworth and Highland are not among them, sources said."

That's incredibly weak if true. It's hard to schedule games in weeks like 6 and 10 when you are a solid program and the current season had already started for 2022. I think that's a fine compromise for Solon to go in everything but football

Hoping we still play them sometimes out of conference, but I expect if they play any GCC teams in football, it will be those on the bottom of the league instead
 
Last edited:

MentorGrad2002

Well-known member
In terms of coaching, Matt Gray enters his fourth season as head coach. One major coaching change is the retirement of longtime defensive coordinator, Jim Funk. Mentor hasn't announced his replacement that I know of yet. This new hire will be a key part of the potential for change and improvement in the defensive culture. Defensively, this will be a big transition as the team often started 9 or even 10 seniors.
This is the biggest positive for Mentor going into 2023 and beyond. I'm sure Funk is a great guy and was a great teacher. He was a bad DC. Trivs biggest flaw was not improving the defensive coaching over a decade ago because they were friends.

I truly believe this cost us a title or two

Will be interested to see who they get. If the guys internal don't have their own voice and ideas for changes, I pray it comes from the outside
 

cardzfan1234

Well-known member
In a 24 season stretch, Mentor will have had 13 unique conference schedules. The most stable stretches were the first five seasons of the GCC and from 2007-2009 at the tail end of their involvement in the LEL when there were only four conference games. I kinda forgot the NOC ended quite that quickly. Unfortunately, due to Mentor's success, size, and geographic proximity - expect the next 24 years to also be filled with change and fluctuation. It is too bad Mentor is essentially a "football island" - no peer in the county. Not many peers with a lot in common at all across NEO, but most of them are 50+ miles away. It will be nice to have seven league games in 2023. Mentor is not the only with this kind of unstable league experience as most other big Cleveland-area DI schools also have a similar story.

2001: Shaker, Euclid, Cle Hts, Lakewood, Valley Forge, Elyria
2002: Valley Forge out, Lorain schools in
2003: 6 LEL games instead of 7 (plus Shaw instead of Southview)
2004: same as 2003
2005: unchanged, but no LEL crossover
2006: Maple into Lake Division, Admiral King out
2007: Lakewood left, only four LEL games
2008: same as 2007
2009: same as 2007/2008
2010: WGH added to LEL
2011: NOC (Medina, Solon, Brunswick, Strongsville, Twinsburg)
2012: same as 2011
2013: Hudson swaps division with Twinsburg
2014: same as 2013
2015-2019: GCC unchanged
2020: no Shaker (but a weird COVID year anyway)
2021: no Elyria
2022: same as 2021
2023: adding Heights/Shaker
2024: losing Solon
 
Last edited:

MentorGrad2002

Well-known member
In a 24 season stretch, Mentor will have had 13 unique conference schedules. The most stable stretches were the first five seasons of the GCC and from 2007-2009 at the tail end of their involvement in the LEL when there were only four conference games. I kinda forgot the NOC ended quite that quickly. Unfortunately, due to Mentor's success, size, and geographic proximity - expect the next 24 years to also be filled with change and fluctuation. It is too bad Mentor is essentially a "football island" - no peer in the county. Not many peers with a lot in common at all across NEO, but most of them are 50+ miles away. It will be nice to have seven league games in 2023. Mentor is not the only with this kind of unstable league experience as most other big Cleveland-area DI schools also have a similar story.

2001: Shaker, Euclid, Cle Hts, Lakewood, Valley Forge, Elyria
2002: Valley Forge out, Lorain schools in
2003: 6 LEL games instead of 7 (plus Shaw instead of Southview)
2004: same as 2003
2005: unchanged, but no LEL crossover
2006: Maple into Lake Division, Admiral King out
2007: Lakewood left, only four LEL games
2008: same as 2007
2009: same as 2006/2007
2010: WGH added to LEL
2011: NOC (Medina, Solon, Brunswick, Strongsville, Twinsburg)
2012: same as 2011
2013: Hudson swaps division with Twinsburg
2014: same as 2013
2015-2019: GCC unchanged
2020: no Shaker (but a weird COVID year anyway)
2021: no Elyria
2022: same as 2021
2023: adding Heights/Shaker
2024: losing Solon
Great summary and interesting

I think the GCC can exist at 7, but they obviously want 8 which is the ideal number. The FED is at 7 and others have even less

The difficulty would be filling in the off GCC week in weeks 4-10. For Mentor it shouldn't be difficult if they use logic. Either move Ignatius to later in the year or get a strong program like Massillon to fill in

The hope is that a local public will play us sometime in weeks 1-3 and other publics can fill it out. Would like Solon, but think they might schedule down with Shaker and Strongsville types if they play any GCC teams at all
 

fbrox

Well-known member
Great summary and interesting

I think the GCC can exist at 7, but they obviously want 8 which is the ideal number. The FED is at 7 and others have even less

The difficulty would be filling in the off GCC week in weeks 4-10. For Mentor it shouldn't be difficult if they use logic. Either move Ignatius to later in the year or get a strong program like Massillon to fill in

The hope is that a local public will play us sometime in weeks 1-3 and other publics can fill it out. Would like Solon, but think they might schedule down with Shaker and Strongsville types if they play any GCC teams at all
Easiest thing to do with an odd number Conference membership is to find another one with similar situation. Build an alliance to play games to fill the holes.
 

BlackandGold

RollSide
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Mentor to the WRC please. Especially if the WRC loses Kenston. I would like to see:

Brush
Chardon
Euclid
Mayfield
Mentor
North
Riverside
South

Minimal travel. Local rivalries galore. Mentor will most times than not in boys sports compete for a championship, but never guaranteed.
 

MentorGrad2002

Well-known member
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Mentor to the WRC please. Especially if the WRC loses Kenston. I would like to see:

Brush
Chardon
Euclid
Mayfield
Mentor
North
Riverside
South

Minimal travel. Local rivalries galore. Mentor will most times than not in boys sports compete for a championship, but never guaranteed.
That would absolutely suck for football and boys basketball for us as we've said before. Other sports fine.

And if anything the 4 Eastside GCC teams could take on brush and 3 of your 6 teams.

The wrc isn't in position to poach the GCC. . You guys lose one more and you might not exist. If Kenston left, others would want to go. Maybe one to the GCC

Also can we stop with the fantasy on most of those schools wanting Mentor? Your school just tried to play them for the first time ever in football. We will see if it lasts. Others duck in once and awhile for football but avoid us for the most part in real games. They don't want Mentor in the conference.

In basketball there are zero wrc teams on the schedule this year. Sometimes Mentor plays 2-3 wrc games. A lot different than playing 10 vs the current wrc. Brush didn't even want that. Mentor is a better program than Brush in boys basketball. The GCC is looking great for boys basketball

But this belongs in your wrc thread. This thread isnt about the wrc and your fantasy lineup
 
Last edited:

cardzfan1234

Well-known member
Schedule for 2023

Week 1 : 08/18 A Massillon Jackson
Week 2: 08/25 H Cleveland St. Ignatius
Week 3: 09/01 A Painesville Riverside
Week 4: 09/08 H Medina
Week 5: 09/15 A Cleveland Heights
Week 6: 09/22 A Solon
Week 7: 09/29 H Shaker Heights
Week 8: 10/06 H Brunswick
Week 9: 10/13 A Strongsville
Week10: 10/20 H Euclid
Way, way early ranking of these games in terms of difficulty:

Likely losses:
1. St Ignatius
2. Medina

50/50:
3. Cleveland Heights
4. Riverside

Comfortable win:
5. Jackson
6. Solon

Running clock potential:
7. Strongsville
8. Brunswick

Running clock certainty:
9. Shaker
10. Euclid

I think Mentor will be less talented than 2022 and still end up with 8 wins, which is two more than their regular season total from this past season (yes, I know there was a bye). They certainly will enter the season with a lot less experience. St Ignatius and Medina are easily the top two teams on the schedule. Riverside and Heights are tough road games that could go either way. I think Mentor should be clear favorites in the other six.
 

fbrox

Well-known member
That would absolutely suck for football and boys basketball for us as we've said before. Other sports fine.

And if anything the 4 Eastside GCC teams could take on brush and 3 of your 6 teams.

The wrc isn't in position to poach the GCC. . You guys lose one more and you might not exist. If Kenston left, others would want to go. Maybe one to the GCC

Also can we stop with the fantasy on most of those schools wanting Mentor? Your school just tried to play them for the first time ever in football. We will see if it lasts. Others duck in once and awhile for football but avoid us for the most part in real games. They don't want Mentor in the conference.

In basketball there are zero wrc teams on the schedule this year. Sometimes Mentor plays 2-3 wrc games. A lot different than playing 10 vs the current wrc. Brush didn't even want that. Mentor is a better program than Brush in boys basketball. The GCC is looking great for boys basketball

But this belongs in your wrc thread. This thread isnt about the wrc and your fantasy lineup
I wonder why none of the WRC schools won’t play Mentor in basketball….Seems like this would be a great game for Mayfield or Riverside… I wonder if their is a rift between these guys and Mentor… I cannot possibly imagine why…..
 

MentorGrad2002

Well-known member
I wonder why none of the WRC schools won’t play Mentor in basketball….Seems like this would be a great game for Mayfield or Riverside… I wonder if their is a rift between these guys and Mentor… I cannot possibly imagine why…..
Take it to the basketball board. You were booted from the 2022 football thread for constant trolling and not letting community discussion take place. See you're not learning from that.

Then again you are a Lake Catholic fan who rips VASJ trolls in the Lake Catholic thread for doing a lot of the same stuff you do with us ...do something more productive.

Ps:. God forbid 2 families move back to Mentor where the dad's went to school and played basketball under Coach K. A private school guy talking about recruiting is hilarious!

If the wrc people get mad at that, who cares? They aren't good opponents anyways in boys basketball.

Now back to football because it's clearly a Mentor team thread on the football board...
 
Last edited:

MentorGrad2002

Well-known member
The JTO was in the process of getting some renovations during the 2022 season and they should be done by the 2023 season including a new weight room and entrances.
Great to hear it will be done by the start of 2023. I meant to ask about updates on the project. Thanks for the update
 

MentorGrad2002

Well-known member
Mentor board has to be the most trolled board out there (besides the mess that is the VASJ and LC boards). Nothing but respect for the Mentor Posters on here for handling it well.
I know you were talking conference affiliation on the wrc thread. Has Brush ever thought about the GCC? I know the league originally invited Brush and Mayfield when the GCC was reformed

Hope you guys find a home if you want one somewhere
 

Arcy26

Active member
I know you were talking conference affiliation on the wrc thread. Has Brush ever thought about the GCC? I know the league originally invited Brush and Mayfield when the GCC was reformed

Hope you guys find a home if you want one somewhere
I haven’t heard anything about them considering the GCC. That’s definitely something to consider, however, they would be easily the smallest school in the Conference
 

MentorGrad2002

Well-known member
I haven’t heard anything about them considering the GCC. That’s definitely something to consider, however, they would be easily the smallest school in the Conference
I think WRC is the best fit. But if you want great basketball, this might be the best public school league in the state.

Football you'd struggle though. I just don't see Brush fitting the LEL without heights and Shaker but we will see.

Hoping you find a good home.
 

MentorGrad2002

Well-known member
Way, way early ranking of these games in terms of difficulty:

Likely losses:
1. St Ignatius
2. Medina

50/50:
3. Cleveland Heights
4. Riverside

Comfortable win:
5. Jackson
6. Solon

Running clock potential:
7. Strongsville
8. Brunswick

Running clock certainty:
9. Shaker
10. Euclid

I think Mentor will be less talented than 2022 and still end up with 8 wins, which is two more than their regular season total from this past season (yes, I know there was a bye). They certainly will enter the season with a lot less experience. St Ignatius and Medina are easily the top two teams on the schedule. Riverside and Heights are tough road games that could go either way. I think Mentor should be clear favorites in the other six.
Categories you used I agree to a point At the same time, I don't see any certain losses

Medina is at home and Mentor rocked them in the playoffs . Ignatius is like us where they are still competitive, but are hardly at their best .

Defense lost a ton including a couple really good players. Funk leaving could help though if the right hire is made there. And who knows on the lower levels as I don't watch middle school football.

Excited to have Cleveland Hts for football. Shaker at least has a good stadium atmosphere.
 

SVillegrad

Well-known member
Way, way early ranking of these games in terms of difficulty:

Likely losses:
1. St Ignatius
2. Medina

50/50:
3. Cleveland Heights
4. Riverside

Comfortable win:
5. Jackson
6. Solon

Running clock potential:
7. Strongsville
8. Brunswick

Running clock certainty:
9. Shaker
10. Euclid

I think Mentor will be less talented than 2022 and still end up with 8 wins, which is two more than their regular season total from this past season (yes, I know there was a bye). They certainly will enter the season with a lot less experience. St Ignatius and Medina are easily the top two teams on the schedule. Riverside and Heights are tough road games that could go either way. I think Mentor should be clear favorites in the other six.
Looks about right to me. The only change I would make is moving Strongsville into the comfortable win category. I think they should be much improved next year and could be the fifth hardest game on the schedule, though I doubt they can beat Mentor.

The future actually looks pretty bright for Strongsville. They have some good talent coming through the system and it appears like the numbers are growing. I saw they were able to go back to fielding two teams at both the 7th and 8th grade levels for the first time in 3-4 years and I think all four of those teams posted winning records. For the past couple of years, only Mentor and Medina had fielded two teams each at the 7th and 8th grade level. Brunswick's athletic site only shows one team at each level, but I wanna say somebody told me they also had two teams (and looking at the team photos, they certainly had enough ... 48 in 8th and 56 in 7th).
 

bkmk1

Well-known member
I would like to see you put in in these categories.
Heavy favorite, slight favorite, toss up (50/50), slight underdog, big underdog.
 
Last edited:

MentorGrad2002

Well-known member
I would like toy see you put in in these categories.
Heavy favorite, slight favorite, toss up (50/50), slight underdog, big underdog.
Heavy favorite:. Shaker Heights, Strongsville, Brunswick , Euclid , Jackson, Solon.

Slight favorite:. Heights, Riverside .

Slight underdog :. Medina , Ignatius
 

trivbird

Member
Way too early depth chart for next year based on what others have posted so far. Feel free to fill in the blanks:

QB - Fox/Coyne
RB - Coughlin/Farley
WR - Hodge
WR - Van Huss
WR - Calderwood/G. Cerny
TE - Schenk
LT - ???
LG - O'Neil
C - LoDuca
RG - Hines
RT - Demirci

DE - ?? (I saw someone post names of some Freshmen D-lineman: Yates, Brede, Coleman, Mitchell, Holland)
DT - Saley
DT - ??
OLB/DE - ??
ILB - Schenk
ILB - ??
OLB/SS - Schwalm
SS - Shelley
FS - Markowski
CB - Graham
CB - Fisher/Lamar
 

FightingCardinal

Well-known member
Way too early depth chart for next year based on what others have posted so far. Feel free to fill in the blanks:

QB - Fox/Coyne
RB - Coughlin/Farley
WR - Hodge
WR - Van Huss
WR - Calderwood/G. Cerny
TE - Schenk
LT - ???
LG - O'Neil
C - LoDuca
RG - Hines
RT - Demirci

DE - ?? (I saw someone post names of some Freshmen D-lineman: Yates, Brede, Coleman, Mitchell, Holland)
DT - Saley
DT - ??
OLB/DE - ??
ILB - Schenk
ILB - ??
OLB/SS - Schwalm
SS - Shelley
FS - Markowski
CB - Graham
CB - Fisher/Lamar
WR - Marcus Sierputowski
DE - Shane Krejci
OLB - Ryan Skelly
OLB - Nathan Beyer
ILB - Oscar Benavente
FS - Cameron Taylor (Markowski at SS)
 

UnDone

New member
Way too early depth chart for next year based on what others have posted so far. Feel free to fill in the blanks:

QB - Fox/Coyne
RB - Coughlin/Farley
WR - Hodge
WR - Van Huss
WR - Calderwood/G. Cerny
TE - Schenk
LT - ???
LG - O'Neil
C - LoDuca
RG - Hines
RT - Demirci

DE - ?? (I saw someone post names of some Freshmen D-lineman: Yates, Brede, Coleman, Mitchell, Holland)
DT - Saley
DT - ??
OLB/DE - ??
ILB - Schenk
ILB - ??
OLB/SS - Schwalm
SS - Shelley
FS - Markowski
CB - Graham
CB - Fisher/Lamar
New to the board. Glad I found it. Couple of my thoughts below:

The 2025 class overall is very talented , VanHuss , Coughlin, Cerney, Seirputowaki were fun to watch as Freshmen and that was without Fox at QB that year. VanHuss is 6’2” 175 with great hands and didn’t drop a target as a sophomore at the varsity level, need him to grow into a deep threat. Coughlin lacks a bit of speed and needs to add some size but always runs hard and can break the line well. He runs like his Brother Riley a few years ago, he won’t be running around you and he Is hard to bring down.

There are some solid 2025 LB’s that just need a little size , Vitelli , Clair , Barninger are aggressive hitters who fly to the ball and Schenk will probably move back to LB this year I would think , that is his most natural position and was underutilized at the wing spot before he broke his ankle.

Since Snow was the backup QB last year they started working Sr. Ben Pierce at the JV level. He is 6’3” 220 and has a great arm. Last year as a Jr. was his first year ever playing football so has a lot to learn but started making strides at the JV level. I would imagine he will be Fox’s backup coming into 2023.

One thing the offense is missing is a bit of speed. But the freshmen (2026 grads) line are legit. Big, physical and aggressive. O-Line / D-Line should be in a very good position the next 2-3 years that will allow for a better run game than they had last season.

2023 might be a bit of a learning year , (young team , new DC) but anyone who looks past Mentor for the 2024 season will be making big mistake. That might be a legit year they can make a run. They will be big, skilled and experienced, the 2025/2026 classes make for a bright future.
 
.
Top