Bonner, Dawson keep Aves grounded

It’s a very rare circumstance when you see a team returning two 1,000 yards rusher from the year before but Sycamore and head coach Scott Datillo will have that luxury this fall. Datillo’s star backfield of Clarence Dawson and Ra’Von Bonner put on an impressive show in 2014 doing most of their damage in GMC play. Both players were First Team All-GMC selections last season.


Dawson is the smaller of the two players at 5-foot-6, 165 pounds and he likes living on the edge. When he gets out on the wing and can turn the corner Dawson becomes a handful for the opposition. He finished his junior year with 1,022 yards (7.1/carry) and eight touchdowns rushing. Four times in the last six games (All versus GMC schools) he ran for 125 yards or more.

Bonner is coming off a breakout sophomore campaign. The 6-foot-1, 185 pound banger gets better as the game goes on. He was the Aviators workhorse running for 1,120 yards (5.1/carry) and 16 touchdowns (nine scores in his last three outings). Bonner ran for 125 yards or more five times (four of those on the road) in Sycamore’s last eight games. In four of those affairs he carried the ball at least 27 times. He already has an offer from Cincinnati.

The duo did some of their best work together, teaming up for some monster Friday nights. At Hamilton they combined for 380 yards rushing (Bonner – 188, Dawson – 192), 340 yards (Bonner – 169, Dawson – 171) against Mason and another 251 at Middletown (Bonner – 126, Dawson – 125). Three other times they combined for more than 200 yards on the ground in ’14.

Bonner and Dawson are special tandem and it will be interesting to see how they fare in the post-season if Sycamore can get there. The Aviators move down to Division II, Region 6 and Bonner and Dawson are just the type of weapons that can carry a team a long way in November.

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