Dan Williams doesn't think his Mainland Regional High School boys basketball squad can hang with Atlantic City or Holy Spirit in the Cape-Atlantic League American Conference.
But putting those two schools aside, he feels his Mustangs can compete within the rest of the conference.
"The Absegamis and Millvilles and Vinelands and Egg Harbor Townships of the world and the rest of our conference, I think we have enough talent back that I see no reason we shouldn't be competitive with those teams," Williams said.
Mainland went 10-16 last season, and lost two guards - Dionis Gonzalez and Teddy Mazzeo - to graduation.
Sophomore Sam Jackson is probably the front runner to start at the point this season, Williams said.
Williams will rely on a pair of senior big men to provide them with offense and rebounding this season.
One of those seniors is Darius Jerkins, Mainland's leading scorer. This will be the 6-foot-5 power forward's third full year as a starter.
"He's a pretty long kid, very athletic," Williams said. "If he gets a little more assertive and aggressive, then he could really be a handful for a lot of teams to deal with."
The other senior is Kenny Randall, a standout football player who has committed to Temple University.
Randall, an offensive and defensive lineman, is 6-3 and 295 pounds. He was Mainland's leading rebounder and second leading scorer last season - and he can dunk.
Contact John Russo:
League: Cape-Atlantic League American
Group: South Jersey Group IV
Coach: Dan Williams (10-16, one season)
2012-13 record: 10-16
2013-14 prediction: Spoiler - Mainland will use size to compete.
Key players: Darius Jerkins Sr., 6-5, F; Kenny Randall Sr., 6-3, F; James Brennan Sr., 6-2, F; Sam Jackson So., 5-10, G; Drew Dalzell Jr., 5-8, G; Dean Deveney So., 6-3, F.