Lance Clelland, head coach of the Meade (Ft. Meade, Md.) varsity football team, has been named Ravens High School Coach of the Week for the second week of the 2008 season. Presented by Toyota, this is the 12th year of the Ravens' award program.
Clelland takes the honor after his Mustangs routed Chesapeake High School, 47-0, on Friday (9/12). The win was a complete turnaround from last year's clash, when Meade was on the receiving end of a 36-0 shutout. In his first year as a head coach, Clelland has turned around a Mustangs team that went 1-9 in 2007. Meade (2-0) had only won 11 games over the past six years, and has not had a winning season since 2001.
Credit senior QB Raymond Cotton, a transfer from Alabama, for the spark ignited in this team. The Auburn University recruit is on the short list of the country's top high school quarterbacks. In the defeat of Chesapeake, he went 15-of-18 for 250 yards and three TDs. The standout also had a rushing TD, bringing his season total to eight scores (six passing, two on the ground).
"It's nice to have," Clelland gushed, when asked about the value of his star player. "Every football coach knows, a good player like that makes you look a lot better.
"I'm in my first year, and it's important to get the kids believing. Meade has had a rough go of it in the past, and we're excited to start fresh."
Senior WR/DB Darrius Brown was on the receiving end of Cotton's three TDs, pulling in 11 grabs for 170 yards. Brown showed good hands on both sides of the ball, returning an INT off Chespeake QB Dylan Welchel for 50 yards and another TD.
Many teammates got in on the action, and RBs Duane McClan and Howard Murry were able to cap the game off with two scores on 70- and 5-yard runs, respectively.
Meade only scored six points in the first quarter, as the Cougars' defense held up. The rest of the game was a different story, however, as the Mustangs rattled off 41 more uncontested points. This season, the Mustangs have overpowered their opponents with an 89-7 point ratio.
This is the first Ravens High School Coach of the Week honor for Clelland, a former All-Metro lineman at McDonogh. In his 7th year of coaching overall, Clelland tutored the tight ends at Dartmouth University last year.
"It's a tremendous honor," Clelland expressed. "I know that Chuck Markiewicz of Arundel was named the Coach of the Week last week, and I'm happy to keep the Anne Arundel team going. I know the history of the program with the Ravens, and I'm excited to be a part of it."
Each week during the season, the Ravens honor a high school coach who has made a significant impact on his athletes. Each of the season's weekly winners will be present at the Ravens – Steelers home game on Dec. 14, for the naming of the Ravens' High School Coach of the Year.
A panel of area high school experts selects the coach of the week. The recipients receive:
- A $2,000 donation to the school's football program
- An award certificate signed by Ravens head coach John Harbaugh, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, and Gene Washington, the NFL's Director of Football Development
- A specially-designed hat