* Annapolis (5-5) -- Coach Roy Brown believes his Panthers can challenge for the county title. He had 120 candidates for a program that missed the playoffs for the first time in 7 seasons in 1990. Fifty players have been sent to the JV, and the Panthers will retain only 8 seniors.
* Arundel (5-5) -- If the Wildcats break .500, they would be doing so without size, depth and experience. FB Matt Henson and OG/DE Brett D'Camera are third-year starters. Forty-nine of coach Buddy Hepfer's 85 players are freshmen or sophomores.
* Broadneck (3-7) -- The Bruins have some key seniors, 25 lettermen and a veteran line. Junior QB Brian Tate is unproven, but he will benefit from a solid front of seniors OL Steve Bruso, TE Erik Schwenke and OT Alex Waddell. Only 3 of Broadneck's losses last season were by more than 8 points.
* Chesapeake (1-9) -- "We have to make football meaningful at Chesapeake. It used to be taken for granted," said coach Tom Kraning, who has made roster cuts for the first time. Among the survivors is an all-senior OL of Kevin Sellers, Shawn Somers, Adam McCann, Tim Wilde and Chris Price. Junior RB Brandon Steinheim rushed for 750 yards last season.
* Glen Burnie (6-4) -- The once-powerful Gophers continue their resurgence under coach Dave Rigot, as senior all-county LB John Spencer leads a swift, veteran team. DT/TE John Singleton, RB Alphonso Generette, RB/LB Trae Gillis, OG/DE Ricky Kramer, LB/DE Bo Nixon and QB Dave Lanham are key seniors.
* Meade (1-9) -- The Mustangs' worst record had much to do with inexperience (only 7 seniors) and turnovers (3 per game). Whether Meade can hang onto the ball remains to be seen, but it has experience. Senior DB Kevin Powell had 3 interceptions and 70 tackles. Sophomore RB Kenny Walker (5-11, 180) led the squad in rushing with 505 yards.
* North County (8-2) -- The Knights may wreak havoc on a !B ground-oriented league. Seniors Damon Martin, Troy Ross, Randy Swain and John Bilheimer had a combined 142 catches for 1,710 yards and 18 TDs last year in the run-and-shoot. North County must replace record-setting QB John Ray, but Markiewicz says sophomore left-hander Reggie Moore and junior Eric Howard are farther along than Ray was at this point.
* Old Mill (9-2) -- Will the Patriots avenge their only regular-season loss and unseat champion Severna Park? There are 27 seniors and 20 lettermen, led by third-year C Austin Johnson and NT Billy Reese. RB Harold Peters ran for 358 yards and caught 47 passes last season. Ernie Longazel is an all-county TE.
* Queen Anne's (6-4) -- "Jumping right into an Anne Arundel 4A schedule is tough," said coach Dave Cooper, whose team competed as an independent before this season. "There's not much size, and this is the youngest team I've ever had." Cooper said junior QB Rob Gunter (5-10, 160) "will be a special player, but, unfortunately, he can't block for himself."
* Severna Park (7-3) -- The Falcons have won 28 of their past 32 league games -- all 7 in 1990 -- and seek a fourth county title in 5 years behind 2 major-college prospects: All-Metro OG Mark Miles and RB John Jennings, who ran for 1,264 yards and 13 TD last season. The 11 returning starters include SE Robbie McCandless, LB Bryan Stephens, DB Gerald Cager and LB/FB Aaron Cree. Senior QB Tim Bowerman has some experience.
* Northeast (3-7) -- After an off-season of firings and re-hirings throughout the school, the Eagles are ready to play football. "It felt good to get away and just concentrate on football," Bart Rader said after his team's annual 10-day camp on the Eastern Shore. Rader also feels good about a veteran team that may be his best since the 7-3 squad of 1989. Seniors OT Steve Gorski, DT Matt Widener and RB Derek Dolch will lead the way.
Southern (4-6) -- The shrinking division (which had 7 teams as recently as 1987) has left Southern with what coach Buck Gardner calls "a mysterious schedule -- we're playing teams I don't know anything about." Gardner does know that he returns considerable talent, with 12 lettermen led by OG/DT Dave Sisas, RB/LB Andy Dawson, RB/LB Curtis Holland, TE/DE Jesse Marks and OG/DT Joe Conte.
* South River (6-4) -- Dodging injuries is the key at South River, which has only 25 varsity players. "We need to fill holes in the line, but there is a good nucleus in the backfield," said coach Dave Summey, who called the Seahawks' 15 seniors "our biggest strength." Among them are RB Chris Messineo, who ran for 756 yards last year, and QB Jake Cameron, who had 1,032 yards of total offense.