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December 28, 2011

Chesapeake Bowl matchup: North LBs vs. South RBs

MORE: Chesapeake Bowl notes | Full coverage

Lanham, Md. - The second annual Chesapeake Bowl will kick off Friday, Dec. 30 at 7:30 p.m. in Edgewater, Md., at South River High School. The North squad is made up primarily of players from Pennsylvania and New Jersey, while the South team features prospects from Maryland and the Washington, D.C. area. An interesting position matchup to watch will be the North linebackers trying to stop the size of the South offensive backfield.

The Players:

North linebackers: Jaylen Coleman (Pittsburgh, Pa.), Tristin Freeman (Philadelphia, Pa.), Steve Longa (Saddle Brook, N.J.), T.J. White (West Chester, Pa.)

South running backs: Wes Brown (Olney, Md.), Dominic Bryan (North Bethesda, Md.), Kenneth Goins (Baltimore, Md.), Albert Reid (Washington, D.C.)

The breakdown:

The size of the South's running backs will test the strength and durability of the North defense throughout Friday's game. Brown, Goins and Bryan all line up at over 200 pounds, with Bryan being the heaviest at 225 pounds. Even in a platoon system, as is necessary in all-star games in order to get everyone touches, the North linebacker corps will still have to fight against getting worn down handling backs of this size for 48 minutes. Reid is the change of pace back in the group, yet he still checks in at 195 pounds.

The North linebackers have decent size to handle the bulk of the South ball carriers, but they are not used to seeing a stable of backs with fresh legs and an average weight close to 210 pounds. Coleman, a three-star linebacker with offers from the likes of Cincinnati and West Virginia, and Longa, another three-star who has committed to Rutgers, are the big names of the group, but Freeman and White also boast several Division I offers and add depth and talent to the group.

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