High School football players have returned to the practice field Monday and that means we are officially ready for the season to get underway. Today we take a look at the “underrated/keep an  eye on” teams in the Tri-Eastern Conference. These are the teams that could get overlooked and potentially surprise everyone this season.

Before we begin, here are the favorites going into the season. This is only a pre-season evaluation based on the players returning this season, (in no particular order…yet).





Now let’s take a look at the underrated:

Lincoln…..The Golden Eagles return key players on both sides of the football including Junior QB Alex Bertsch, RB/DB Alex Hokey, DB Jacob Ervin, LB Josh Miles and Gavin Sherwood. The key for Lincoln will be depth.

Hagerstown…The Tigers had what would be considered a “down” season in 2019, but don’t think that will happen again this season. Coach Scott Snodgrass will have this team ready to go with returning QB Noah Snodgrass. Noah threw for nearly 1,000 yards last season. If the running game improves, the Tigers will be in the hunt this season.

Union County….It is well documented the Patriots 2019 season was filled with setbacks. The early season automobile accident took QB Zach Hill out of the equation early and they never recovered. Hill returned late, but the offense didn’t click. RB Mason Wicker is a huge difference maker when he is healthy. Union County’s defense will be the key in 2019.

Union City….The Indians won a huge road game at Tri to start the 2019 season and then lost four straight and five of their next six games. Coach Keith Maloy found the magic late winning three of their final four games including a road win at Centerville and the rivalry win against Winchester. Union City is hoping that momentum will carry over this season.

Tri….The Titans also finished the 2019 season with momentum winning three of their final four games. It was an up-and-down season for the 5-6 Titans, but they had some good wins over Centerville, Union County and South Decatur. QB Syrus Butler returns as does RB’s Tyler Kingery (835 rushing yards last season), Vade Dishman (834) and Zach Davis (826). The defense played well in the final three games of 2019 giving up an average of 10 points per game.