The task of replacing Manning at quarterback would have proven a lot taller had Casey Colligan not been forced into duty when Manning got hurt in the Class AA semifinal win over Corcoran.
Colligan started the rest of the way, through the sectional and regional finals plus the state semifinal, and according to Sanfilippo, "he did a great job running the team." Now Colligan returns, and while he's not as big a physical presence as Manning, his leadership skills are unquestioned.
No single running back could possibly match the 2,960 yards (the fifth-best single season total in state history) Burks put up in '09, but the Bees will attempt to get somewhere near that vicinity of production with a committee of runners.
Ben Paprocki has the most experience in the backfield, with Antonio Peck and Parker Kiff also returning, but keep an eye on sophomore Tyler Rouse, who could is speeding up the depth chart. At fullback, Stephen Mitchell leads the pack, with Dave Middlemore and a pair of newcomers, Jimmy Lang and Tom Boyer, also part of the mix.
It's up to Eric Tommarello and Collin Twombly to replace the productive trio of Varga, Clouston and Redmond at wide receiver, while Carter Twombly, Nate Stoughtenger and Mark Stanard all attempt to succeed Alenciewicz at tight end. Stanard is also the Bees' primary placekicker.
Just as with the offensive line, much of the Bees' defensive line returns intact. Only Jones needs to be replaced as Robinson and Margrey man the tackle spots and Stoughtenger makes for an imposing end. Moreland, at tackle, and Stanard, at end, are likely parts of the rotation.
B'ville returns its leading tackler from '09 as Mitchell leads a solid linebacker corps. It helps, too, that Middlemore, who missed last year due to an injury, is back for full-time duty (he played at the varsity level in 2008) as Kiff, Rouse, Lang and Boyer all join the fray.