PREVIEW: “Our main goal is…to put ourselves in position to win the last possible game we can play” is previewing 80 high schools in 40 days.  As the previews are announced, you can find them here on CFC.

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The Downsview Mustangs of the Toronto District Secondary School Athletic Association (TDSSAA) are on a mission in 2014.

“Our expectation is to be competitive every play, of every game,” commented Mustangs Head Coach Russ Hoff.  “We can accomplish this by being at all practices and team activities to learn and progress through our training.”

“Our main goal is, as always, to put ourselves in position to win the last possible game we can play.  So if we are competitive enough to make the playoffs, the ‘last game’ will obviously be at the end of fall in the Bowl Series.”

For the team to reach their goals, they will be “well-prepared”.  What will make the Mustangs a dangerous team this season is their speed – something that opposing teams have become accustomed to yearly.

“We are going to be a fast team, as always,” explained Hoff.   “We will work to utilize our speed and ability to spread the field to score points on offense, and our quickness to pursue aggressively to the football and create havoc on defence.”

Quinn Charles

Lineman Floyd Fuller and wide receiver/defensive back/athlete Quinn Charles will be the two key players that will dictate the Mustangs’ success.

“Floyd and Quinn will be counted on to step up and provide veteran leadership for our program this season,” said Hoff.  “Floyd will be one of the better defensive linemen in our league and fills in admirably on the offensive line as well.”

“Quinn has been a big playmaker for us for four seasons now and will be looking to cap his high school career off with a strong season on offense and defense.”

Trivel Pinto

However, the team will have to fill the voids left by two CFC 100 players – Trevelle Wisdom (Carleton Ravens) and Trivel Pinto.

“On offense,we lose one of the best players in Canada in athlete Trivel Pinto,” added Hoff.  “There is no replacing a kid like him, as he moves to a US prep school to pursue an NCAA scholarship, we wish him the best.”

“The strength of our program has to be player development, so we will work to begin the teaching process with our young players and hopefully some of them will continue to develop and begin to carry the load. On defence, we lose linebacker Trivelle Wisdom, who while only playing with us for one season after a transfer, was another CFC Top 100 prospect the past couple seasons.  He moves on to Carleton University and it are expected that we will lean on a mix of returning veterans and young players to replace him at outside linebacker.”

Additionally, there will be a new quarterback who will lead the Mustangs offensive game execution plan.  While there are a couple of returning quarterbacks, there is one player who is emerging as the possible starter and he is transitioning into what is a new position for him.

“As of now, it looks like Grade 10 Dolani Robinson has the inside track, with a couple of older veterans who we will use as ‘package QBs’ to spell him,” assessed Hoff.  “Robinson played wide receiver and started all season as a Grade 9 last fall, so he is familiar with the offense and is a quick study.”

“If he gets the call, he will be ready come Game 1.”

A new pivot means adjustments on offense.

“Because we will be incorporating a new quarterback, who could well be a grade 10 player, this would be the best example of having to tailor our offensive scheme to his strengths and/or try to protect his weaknesses,” added Hoff.

Downsview Mustangs tackle

However, that will not be the only area of concern that the Mustangs are addressing during the offseason.

“We are a varsity team, as such our grade 9’s and 10’s will be competing at times against senior age players,” evaluated Hoff.  “This is always a competitive issue for us, but we feel if we prepare our players the proper way, we can 1) fast track their physical and football IQ development through our offseason training and film/classroom program, and 2) incorporate their strengths into our system in ways that can help our team overall, and shield them from some degree of exposure.”

Hoff said there are two players that could have an immediate impact on both offense and special teams for the Mustangs.

“Grade 10 athlete Marcel Grant and Grade 11 wide receiver JJ Brown both should make some noise on the offense and in the return game,” commented the Mustangs Head Coach.  “Both are provincial level basketball players and Grant scored six touchdowns in eight games as a grade 9 in last year’s Tier 2 championship season.”

As for what to expect on the field, Hoff offered that the Mustangs will use a spread offense while they will play multiple defensive fronts – primarily 30 or ‘odd’ front.

This season marks a change in competition for the Mustangs as the team moves up to the Tier 1 Division after winning the Tier 2 Championship last season.  Ultimately, the team will use this move as a measuring stick while maintaining an intact undefeated league play streak since the 2011-2012 season.

“We move to the TDSB Tier 1 league for the first time since our 2010 inception,” explains Hoff.  “We are excited to test ourselves against the top competition in the league, teams such as Richview, Northern, and Central Tech.”

“Outside of us, I think Wilfrid Laurier CI in Scarborough is a potential sleeper team in TDSB this season.  Rumour has it they’ve added some veteran coaches to oversee the X’s and O’s, and that should be a huge bonus to their athletic roster.”

Ultimately, the Mustangs are anticipating the start of a new season in a new Tier.

“We are very excited for the upcoming season and the opportunity to make our mark in Tier 1,” expressed Hoff.

Downsview Mustangs logo


2013 RECORD: 5-0, won TDSSAA Tier 2 Championship, not lost in League play since 2011-12 season

HEAD COACH: Russ Hoff (fourth season, founded team in 2010)




KEY RETURNEES: Floyd Fuller (offensive/defensive line), Quinn Charles (wide receiver/defensive back/athlete)

KEY LOSSES: Trivel Pinto (receiver –CFC 100, US Prep school), Trevelle Wisdom (linebacker – CFC 100, Carleton Ravens)

“X” FACTOR: Marcel Grant (athlete),  JJ Brown (wide receiver) “Marcel Grant and JJ Brown both should make some noise on the offense and in the return game.  Both are Provincial level basketball players and Grant scored six touchdowns in eight games as a grade 9 in last year’s Tier 2 championship season.” – Russ Hoff, Head Coach, Downsview Mustangs

Photo credits:  Nick Perry,









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