2019 Football Preview: Warren Fitzgerald

2018 Record: 3-6

By: C & G Sports Staff | Warren Weekly | Published July 26, 2019

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Last season’s record: 3-6

League: Macomb Area Conference Gold Division

Returning starters: Six

First game: 7 p.m. Aug. 29 vs. Warren Lincoln

Offensive keys: 

Fitzgerald coach Gary Skop said this year’s team will be young, so learning on the fly is important for the group. Helping to guide the way are junior quarterback Thomas Lewis and senior running back Jalen Crawford. The latter rushed for 1,200 yards last season. 

Defensive keys: 

The team must show athleticism if the Spartans are to get back on track in 2019. Fitzgerald surrendered 341 points over nine games in 2018 — which was the  second most in a season in program history. The Spartans gave up more than 50 points four times in 2018. Lewis (defensive back) and Crawford (linebacker) are expected to lead the group.

Coach’s outlook: 

“The group of kids we have — the core is very young,” Skop said. “We have four seniors back and will likely only have four or five on the team. So far, this summer has been one of the best I’ve ever had. We have a bunch of gym rats — young freshmen and sophomores — looking to get better every day. We’re very athletic and eager to learn. The youth could be a weakness. There are a lot of spots to be won.”


Schedule:

vs. Warren Lincoln (3-6) — 7 p.m. Aug. 29
When the Spartans and Abes take the field in the season opener, it will be the 50th time the programs face off. Fitzgerald holds a 30-18-1 series edge. The Spartans bested the Abes 40-20 in 2018 for their fifth straight win in the matchup.

vs. Clinton Township Clintondale (3-6) — 7 p.m. Sept. 6
Fitzgerald is 6-7 all-time against Clintondale, but the Spartans have won four straight in the series.

at St. Clair Shores Lake Shore (6-4) — 7 p.m. Sept. 13
Fitzgerald is 8-11-1 against Lake Shore. The Shorians won last year’s matchup 53-22 on their way to the playoffs. Last season, the Spartans missed the playoffs for the first time since 2013.

vs. Sterling Heights High (1-8) — 7 p.m. Sept. 20
Prior to last year, a 52-13 Fitzgerald win, the Spartans and Stallions hadn’t met since 1979. Sterling Heights leads the series 5-4.

at Madison Heights Madison (13-1) — 7 p.m. Sept. 27
The Spartans lead the series 26-24-3, but have lost six straight to the Eagles, who are coming off a run to the Division 7 state title game. Last season, Madison beat Fitzgerald 41-18.

vs. Harrison Township L’Anse Creuse (1-8) — 1 p.m. Oct. 5
The Lancers are 5-49 overall since the start of the 2013 season.

at Warren Woods Tower (9-2) — 1 p.m. Oct. 12
Fitzgerald and Tower engaged in a shootout last season in what ended as a 56-48 Titans win. The Spartans trail in the series 6-11 and have dropped five of the last six matchups.

vs. Eastpointe High (5-4) — 7 p.m. Oct. 18
Eastpointe beat Fitzgerald 50-38 last season, but the Spartans lead the series 7-4. Over the last five matchups, the Spartans have outscored the Shamrocks 209-95.

at Port Huron Northern (10-2) — 7 p.m. Oct. 25
Northern bested Fitzgerald 42-16 in last year’s regular-season finale to take a 2-1 series edge. The Spartans dropped three straight games to end the 2018 campaign.

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