16 CAMPS: Charlottesville Black Knights


There's a lot of optimism at Charlottesville going into the 2013 season, and for good reason. The Black Knights made the playoffs for the first time in a decade and now that they have a taste of the postseason, the Black Knights say they want more.

"Man it's like cutthroat for us. It's like a dog fetching for its treat," senior Chris Thurston explained. "We want it. This is the best thing ever. We just want to develop and go as hard as we can."

If CHS makes it back to the playoffs, they'll do so with a quarterback new to them, but familiar to central Virginia football fans. Leon Strauss comes over from Blue Ridge, where he helped the Barons win a state title in 2012. Strauss is making the conversion to quarterback and is expected to lead the Black Knights option offense.

"I was kind of shaky when they first told me I had to play quarterback but the coaches have been working with me day by day and I'm feeling comfortable," Strauss explained.

"Well he's obviously a pretty blessed athlete so I think that makes some difference. And he's buying into all the work and the process we have here," third-year head coach Eric Sherry said of his signal-caller.

Fortunately for Strauss, help is just a few feet away in the backfield in Thurston, a first-team All-Jefferson District running back returning for his final season.

"Yeah I'm going all out, 100%. I feel 100% too. Last year I wasn't at 100% but now I feel like I can get the job done," Thurston said.

"Chris brings his lunch pail everyday. He works, he works, he works," Sherry explained. "He does everything that's asked of him and more. I couldn't be happier with Chris, he's one of the leaders of this football team."

A football team with its sights set on a postseason return, and improving every step of the way.

"We're getting better everyday. One of the things we say around here is you're either getting better or you're getting worse. And I feel for the majority we are getting better," Sherry said.


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