The 12 to Watch in 2012: Dallastown QB Andrew Henry
This is Part 12 in our continuing blog series, which looks at 12 players to watch during the upcoming YAIAA football season. A reminder, there is one major change from last year's list: In an effort to profile a wider range of teams, I'm only picking one player from each school for the list.
Previous playersRB Alex Cooley, Eastern York
QB Andrew Henry
2011 stats: 93-182 (51.1 percent), 1,027 yards, 4 TDs, 10 INTs; 131 rushes, 465 yards, 3.55 avg., 4 TDs
I asked Dallastown coach Kevin Myers on Tuesday if he could recall the last time prior to 2011 a sophomore was named the Wildcats quarterback. He said the last such case he knew of occurred in 1991 -- back when Myers was a senior player at the school.
Even at the small school level, it's rare to see a sophomore handed the starting quarterback role. On the quad-A level? Even more so. But that's exactly what happened last year, when Henry took over the job in Week 2.
That experience could pay huge dividends for Henry -- and Dallastown -- this season.
It's not that the 6-foot-1 passer lit the world on fire in his 10 starts. He fired a combined four interceptions in his first two starts, a pair of shutout losses. But Henry grew into the role as the year grew on, and his contributions were even more noteworthy considering Dallastown's inexperience all over the offensive side of the ball. The Wildcats were fielding a completely new line, and lacked a consistent ground game. (Henry, in fact, was the team's leading rusher.)
"He never really got down on himself," Myers said of Henry. "And if he did, he never really showed it outwardly. I think that’s the biggest thing. He finished strong."
Henry's excels thanks to solid arm strength and what Myers called "deceptive" speed. For a team that figures to contend for a YAIAA Division I title, Henry's continued development will be essential.
Other Wildcats to watch: Myers said Dallastown heads into camp with a three-man rotation at tailback: Returners Keith Matthews and Rob Catchings, along with transfer Alpha Khan from Franklin High School in Maryland. "Just flat-out speed and vision of the backs, probably one of the better (groups) we’ve had," Myers said. ... The offensive line figures to be a strength for the Wildcats, anchored by tackles Austin Graser and Billy Lytle. ... Rising junior Drew Romesburg was one of Dallastown's leading tacklers last season at middle linebacker, and will also line up at tight end.