Lansing Catholic looks to replace key pieces after state title run last season

 The Lansing Catholic Cougars celebrate following their state championship win in 2019
The Lansing Catholic Cougars celebrate following their state championship win in 2019 (WILX)
Published: Jun. 12, 2020 at 11:16 AM EDT
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The 2019 season went about as well as it possibly could have for the Lansing Catholic Cougars. A comeback victory at Ford Field back in November gave the Cougars their first state title in 35 years. This season, however, there are big holes to fill including two stars who will play as walk-ons at Michigan State this season. Zach Gillespie starred at quarterback and Sam Edwards at linebacker for Lansing Catholic in high school and are about to start their careers as Spartans.

"I'm beyond excited. I can't imagine that I'm actually going to be practicing with the Michigan State team, it's going to be awesome," Gillespie said.

Edwards added to that saying, "I'm really excited, its going to be a great time big opportunity ahead. I'm excited to put my head down and work."

The 2020 Cougars have to fill their roles and a few others as well. That task won't be easy but returning star wide receiver Alex Watters believes they can do it.

"Obviously we have players that were on JV last year or varsity last year that are going to pick up a big role that guys like Sam and Zach back there opened up with them leaving. I feel like we're going to be solid this year." Watters said.

The 2019 Detroit Lions High School Football Coach of the Year Jim Ahern is ready to lead the Cougars once again this fall and believes chemistry will play a huge role in his team's chances to defend their state title.

"One of the things that I hope we have that we had last year is outstanding team chemistry. I really believe that that was the key to our success as much as anything. If we can have that again this year then we'll be competitive, I'm sure of that," Ahern explained.

The Cougars are hoping that 7 on 7's are played this summer so they can figure out a few position battles before their season starts on August 28 against Waverly.

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