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2023 Football Preview: Chapman

The Chapman High Panthers are coming into the 2023 season with enthusiasm after the success of a 2022 squad that had some big shoes to fill, particularly on the offensive side of the football. Last season under Junior QB Coleman Gray, the Panthers’ offense sputtered out of gate, albeit in a tough non-region slate that included Woodruff, Byrnes, Boiling Springs, Clinton, and Union County, getting off to an 0-3 start. They scored just 41 combined points in those 3 games, including just 7 in their season-opening OT loss to Woodruff and 7 again the next week against Byrnes. They went on to go 2-2 over their last 3 non-region games before they found their stride and ran the table to a region championship. 


They advanced all the way to the 3rd round of the playoffs before bowing out with a 49-27 loss on the road at Clinton – a rematch of their 49-19 loss to them early in the season. 


Chapman lost just five notable seniors from a year ago, including one of their leading tacklers in Nose Guard Abraham Fyffe, Safety Devin Roe, Corner/Wideout Nigel Pate, Outside Linebacker/Corner Kaden Thompson, and Center Jack Settle. 


In spite of that, Coach Harry Cabaniss’ 2023 squad is going to be battle-hardened and experienced, loaded with seniors. Their most noteworthy returners are all seniors, including QB Coleman Gray, their leading Wide Receiver from last season Shawn Cunningham, 2-way lineman Harrison Bridges, their leading rusher from 2022 Running Back/Linebacker Mathai Scott, Linebacker Reece Lynch, Running Back/Linebacker Keanu Na, and Defensive Back Hudson Moss. 


Coach Cabaniss is also excited for a few of his newcomers. He mentioned Sophomore Defensive Lineman Khamari Turner, Junior Wideout Shamon Black, Senior Defensive Back/Wide Receiver Bennett Smith, and Senior D Back/Wide Receiver Max Carter. 


Coach Cabaniss says that he is excited for his seniors in particular this season. They have a good chemistry since many of them have been together since they were in elementary school. He also loves that his team is a hard-working bunch, noting that this team’s work ethic is among the best he has ever been around. Cabaniss also pointed out that his skill players on the offensive side of the ball are what we have come to expect from Chapman – one of the team’s greatest strengths. 


It is a good bet that if they stay healthy, this Panther offense is going to be as dangerous as ever in 2023, which can only help them against their tough schedule, which gets underway on the road August 18th against Chapman Alum Brett Sloan’s Woodruff Wolverines, who also feature former Chapman running backs coach Jason Settle at Offensive Coordinator. The Panthers will open at home the following week with Byrnes, followed by a date with “cross-town” rival Boiling Springs. They also take on Laurens, Clinton, and Union County before starting their quest for back to back region 3-3A titles.


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