All-East football first-team defense

DL: Josh Eldridge

Clintondale, senior, 6-feet-3, 275 pounds.

Highlights: A disruptive force in the middle of the defense, he recorded 34 tackles, three tackles for loss, four sacks and caused three fumbles from his defensive end position.

DL: Jack Steinhauer

Grosse Pointe South, senior, 6-3, 270.

Highlights: Three-year, two-way starter, playing left tackle on offense. On defense he was great at sniffing out screen plays. “Great feet on offense,” said coach Tim Brandon. “Only one screen was completed on us all year because he sniffed them out. Smart kid, getting interest from GLIAC schools.” Had 47 tackles, 19 solo tackles, five sacks and six tackles for loss.

DL: Nicco Moroso

Chippewa Valley, senior, 6-1, 225.

Highlights: The heart and soul of the defense, Moroso finished with 42 tackles, 14.5 tackles for loss and eight sacks. Batted down one pass and had one fumble recovery.

DL: Drew Beesley

Warren De La Salle, senior, 6-3, 225.

Highlights: Filled out the stat sheet with 141 total tackles, 45 solo tackles, 17 sacks, two caused fumbles and two fumble recoveries.

LB: Anthony Saputo

Utica Eisenhower, senior, 6-1, 185.

Highlights: A tackling machine, Saputo finished with 138 tackles, caused one fumble and had one interception. “He’s a sure tackler in the open field,” said coach Chris Smith. “His speed and quickness allowed him to play the run and pass effectively.”

LB: Brendyn Pittman

Macomb Dakota, senior, 6-0, 220.

Highlights: A two-way star, Pittman subbed for Kaiser Carleton during a playoff game and rushed for 157 yards. He finished with 116 tackles, one sack, seven quarterback hurries, four pass deflections and two caused fumbles. On offense he finished with 384 yards on 36 carries and scored eight touchdowns.

LB: Jerome Cooper

Sterling Heights Stevenson, junior, 6-0, 200.

Highlights: Registered 73 tackles (39 solo, 34 assists). Had one pass deflection and one forced fumble and came through with five tackles for loss and one interception. “Jerome played sideline to sideline this year and was great against the run,” said coach Kevin Frederick.

LB: Mitch Heimbuch

Romeo, senior, 6-3, 225.

Highlights: Hard to stop on both sides of the ball, he had 87 tackles heading into the team’s regional final. Registered eight tackles for loss and three sacks. Forced three fumbles and recovered three. Had two interceptions, one going for a TD. On offense caught 23 passes for 566 yards and was a great run blocker at tight end.

DB: Ty Redding

Warren Mott, senior, 6-2, 170.

Highlights: Intercepted 18 passes in three years. This season had 18 tackles and four interceptions as the team’s lockdown corner who took on the opponent’s best receiver. On offense had 20 receptions for 381 yards and four touchdowns and had 11 kickoff returns for 179 yards.

DB: Jared Cutlip

Sterling Heights Stevenson (captain), senior, 6-0, 205.

Highlights: The all-time leading tackler at Stevenson, Cutlip had 73 tackles this season with four forced fumbles, three fumble recoveries, two interceptions and a pass deflection. “Jared was a punishing tackler and running back,” said coach Kevin Frederick. “His play on both sides of the ball contributed to our success.” He also rushed for 500 yards and had 10 touchdowns. Scored 29 on his ACT.

DB: Tavin Allison

Macomb Dakota, senior, 6-1, 181.

Highlights: A shutdown corner and top-flight receiver who is going to be a factor on the basketball team as well, registered 49 tackles, one pass interception, seven pass deflections and one fumble recovery. Caught 12 passes for 297 yards and carried the ball seven times for 87 yards.

Coaches: Jason Couch, Curt Rienas


Highlights: Led the Bulldogs to the Division 1 state title. The two had played on Romeo’s last state semifinalist, when Couch was a senior and Rienas was a sophomore. They have co-coached together since the 2003 season. Couch had to dye his hair blonde when this team reached the semifinals, losing a wager to the team. A MAC White power now, the Bulldogs under Couch and Rienas more than held their own when they were in the MAC Red.

All-East football first-team offense
All-East football second team, honorable mention

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