Getting to Know the 2015 Dowling Catholic Maroons

By Romelle Slaughter

In a perfect world, people would ask for an encore performance and they receive one.

But what type of encore will Dowling Catholic give this year?  After all, they are the two-time defending Class 4A champions. The next question is how will they win their third straight title without the likes of Ryan Boyle, Nick Wilson, and Max Morris?

If you asked the Maroons’ football Tom Wilson, it won’t be easy to replace that amount of talent, but they will fill in with capable players. With 40+ letterwinners, including the only returning starter Michael Zachary who will not be eligible to play until October. Cole Deskin, Michael Palme and Brawntae Wells saw significant game time during the season, the Maroons still have a target on their back as they prepare for the road to the UNI-Dome.

Junior Cole Deskin will take over full-time in the backfield after an 80 carry, 511 yards, 8 touchdowns performance last season and will be expected to be the workhorse on offense. Deskin also turned heads this spring for his work on the track. Kurt Walding and J.T. Brown will compete to replace Ryan Boyle at quarterback. Both Walding and Brown combined for 6-10 passing for 47 total yards last season. That pales in comparison to Ryan Boyle, who racked up 137-221, 18 touchdowns for 1934 yards in his final season as the Maroons’ signal-caller. 

What will Dowling Catholic look like in the post-Ryan Boyle era? (Courtesy: Sports Spotlight)

Cole Scieszinski will fill see more time at receiver. Alec Hemann replaces “Mr. Perfect” Nick McClellan at placekicker.

Ross Otte and Michael Zachary will lead the Maroons’ defense, which will need to replace standouts Max Morris, Nick Wilson, Jo Jo Jok, and Dante Campero.

Dowling Catholic stats

2014 record:

Head Coach: Tom Wilson,

Assistant Coaches: Jim Williams, Grant Bousum, Jay Campbell, Craig McClain, Adam Jack, Andy Pollock, Jeff Motz, Fred Tiernan, Steve Smith, Ryan Van Veen, Luke Bengtson, Aundra Meeks

Returning offensive players with significant time

QB J.T. Brown and Kurt Walding, SR

WR Cole Scieszinski, SR

RB Cole Deskin, SR

Returning defensive starter

LB Michael Zachary

Total Returning Starters: 1

Total Returning Letterwinners: 40+

Offensive Scheme: Spread

Defensive Scheme: 4-2-5

Facts & Info: Former Johnston star Luke Bengston joins the Dowling staff. Bengston returns to the Des Moines area after being on the University of Arkansas staff. The Maroons will strive to be the first Class 4A school to win three straight football titles. Six schools, including Dowling (Bettendorf, Linn-Mar, Iowa City High, Iowa City West, WDM Valley) has won back-to-back titles. Dowllng and Bettendorf has won back-to-back twice since the playoff era began in 1972.

2015 Schedule (district games in bold)

Aug. 28 @ Cedar Rapids Xavier

Sept. 4 vs. Urbandale

Sept. 11 @ Waukee

Sept. 18 vs Valley (at Drake Stadium)

Sept. 25 @ CB Lewis Central 

Oct. 2. @ SC East

Oct. 9 vs. Johnston

Oct. 16 @ DM Roosevelt

Oct. 23 vs. DM North