Las Vegas Sun

October 31, 2014

Currently: 65° — Complete forecast | Log in | Create an account

HS FOOTBALL:

Marcus Williams, Arie McQuaig among Durango’s busy veterans this season

Image

Sam Morris / Las Vegas Sun

Durango football players Gene Germain, Ben Rush and Jonathan Kalderon Thursday, July 26, 2012.

Northwest League

Arbor View football players Donnie Gaskin, Steven Davis and Rasheed Parks Thursday, July 26, 2012. Launch slideshow »

Durango Coach Matt Gerber

Durango High School Coach Matt Gerber talks about the upcoming 2012 football season.

Breaks will be in short supply for the stars of Durango’s football team this season.

New coach Matt Gerber, who spent years with the same post at Green Valley, doesn’t differentiate his players as offensive and defensive standouts. If they’re talented enough, they can play both sides.

“My philosophy has always been to play your best,” Gerber said. “Look around town at the best players and teams — Nate Starks is playing both sides of the ball for Gorman, Lee Griggs plays offense and defense at Palo. It’s a little out of necessity, as well, for us, but we want our best guys out there.”

That’s why All-Sun selections Marcus Williams and Arie McQuaig could force their way into the end zone as running backs one moment before wrapping up an opposing ball carrier for a tackle the next.

The 5-foot-11, 200-pound Williams anchors an experienced defensive backfield while the 5-foot-11, 205-pound McQuaig could become the Trailblazers' leading tackler at linebacker.

“They are a couple guys with some talent in the backfield,” Gerber said of the duo’s offensive exploits. “It makes a difference to have two guys who can take it to the house any time. They are both big backs with a lot of speed.”

Williams, who transferred from Bishop Gorman last year, committed to Utah this summer. McQuaig, who transferred from Palo Verde two years ago, will also wind up at a Football Championship Subdivision college as UNLV, New Mexico, New Mexico State and Hawaii have shown interest.

Same size, same style, same story — McQuaig and Williams appear to have an eerie number of things in common.

“They’re similar, but Arie is a little more physical,” Gerber said. “He’ll run you over. Marcus is a little more likely to try to make you miss.”

Joining McQuaig at linebacker are seniors Gene Germaine and Jon Kalderon. The group should make it difficult for any opponent to run the ball on the Trailblazers.

Passing won’t be easy, either. Senior Anthony Collins and junior Kameron Gillis lead the secondary along with Williams.

“Our defensive backs might be a little overlooked,” Gerber said. “We return most of those guys, and they are going to solidify us a little bit. We’ve got some skill there.”

Collins and Gillis, of course, will also start at receiver. Gerber installed a demanding offseason program to prepare the players for the rigors of never coming off the field.

“It’s a work in progress, but the effort was definitely there,” Gerber said. “We’ve had our couple scrimmages now, and they are ready to go.”

Case Keefer can be reached at 948-2790 or [email protected]. Follow Case on Twitter at twitter.com/casekeefer.

Join the Discussion:

Check this out for a full explanation of our conversion to the LiveFyre commenting system and instructions on how to sign up for an account.

Full comments policy

Previous Discussion: 2 comments so far…

Comments are moderated by Las Vegas Sun editors. Our goal is not to limit the discussion, but rather to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and contain no abusive language. Comments that are off-topic, vulgar, profane or include personal attacks will be removed. Full comments policy. Additionally, we now display comments from trusted commenters by default. Those wishing to become a trusted commenter need to verify their identity or sign in with Facebook Connect to tie their Facebook account to their Las Vegas Sun account. For more on this change, read our story about how it works and why we did it.

Only trusted comments are displayed on this page. Untrusted comments have expired from this story.

  1. Williams is a class act and I hope to see him do well this season, along with Durango. I will assume it'll be easier to concentrate on having a good season knowing he's set to go to Utah and get a free education and there's not the distractions of recruiters

  2. Aloha,

    FYI, Williams, McQuaig & a bunch of other kids from Sierra Vista Freshmen Football team should have been undefeated. The loss coming from Bishop Gorman, which refs didn't call a good game to say the least. Truthfully, Gorman coaches knew the Sierra kids were better overall.

    If Sierra Vista had good coaching, I can honestly say they would be more than sufficient to make a run providing kids didn't leave.