MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — It’s a new group, but the same story for Martinsburg heading into the 2014 football campaign.

The Bulldogs will enter the season as the favorites in Class AAA again, going for their fifth straight state championship. A 9-7 win over Huntington back in December gave Martinsburg an unprecedented fourth consecutive title.

“The group that we had last year was a bunch of over-achievers,” said Martinsburg coach Dave Walker. “We weren’t overly talented, but those kids worked hard and they played extremely hard. Once the bar and expectations are raised that high, the kids are going to play hard. I don’t know how good we’ll be, but we will play pretty hard.”

Undoubtedly, Walker’s club from here on out will continue to hear and talk about his program’s potential for a five-peat.

Flashback — Defenses, special teams rule day: Martinsburg 4-peats in Class AAA

“That’ll be the hot topic,” Walker said. “But we’ll approach it like we have the past four years. Our goal was just to go out every day and get better in practice, try to take care of the little things and hopefully, if we play well enough in the regular season, we’ll put ourselves into position.”

Walker’s son, Troy, is one of the talents that will be gone from that 2013 club. Another hole to fill will be at quarterback where Malique Watkins put up 2,784 total offensive yards and scored 36 touchdowns last season.

“We lost some great players as we do every year, but the group we have coming back has worked extremely hard,” Walker continued. “They’re excited about getting back, getting August started and getting the season going.

It’s 6-foot junior Carter Walburn expected to take over for Watkins at quarterback.

“He played outside linebacker for us last year as a sophomore,” Walker said. “He has picked things up pretty good, but there’s always room for improvement. We have some other guys too who may take some reps – it may be a couple of guys that end up doing the job for us.”

Wes McKinney/MetroNews

Martinsburg is looking for its fifth straight Class AAA state championship as the Bulldogs head into the 2014 season.

Regardless, the Bulldogs will have a deep, proven backfield in the fold as Deamonte Lindsay and Eric Brown both head into their senior seasons.

The 6-foot-2, 190 pound Lindsay, specifically, finished the 2013 campaign with 1,200 yards rushing and 15 touchdowns on 103 carries.

“The sky is the limit for him,” Walker said. “He has a great frame, he’s fast, very smart and has kind of flown under the radar because of some of the other kids we have had. He has a lot of potential and I think he will get a lot of attention this year.”

The Bulldogs also return leading receivers Eric Mitchell and Dylan Brewer who both head into their senior campaigns.

“We have some skill-kids back, we just have to fill some holes up front and obviously solidify our quarterback,” Walker said. “I think we’ll be alright.”

Martinsburg opens up the year with four straight out-of-state opponents prior to a September 26th battle at Morgantown.

“(Our schedule is) grueling,” Walker said. “We’re playing the same schedule as last year and have to go to Morgantown, which will be tough. If we can survive the first half of our schedule, we’ll be pretty decent. We could open up the season anywhere from 0-5 to 5-0.”

2014 Football Schedule

08/29/14 07:00PM  H  HD WOODSON, DC H.S.  
09/05/14 07:00PM  H  SHERANDO, VA H.S.  
09/12/14 07:00PM  H  STATE COLLEGE, PA HS  
09/19/14 07:00PM  H  TUSCARORA, VA H.S.  
09/26/14 07:30PM  A  MORGANTOWN  
10/03/14 07:00PM  A  WASHINGTON  
10/10/14 07:00PM  A  SPRING MILLS  
10/17/14 07:00PM  H  HEDGESVILLE  
10/24/14 07:00PM  A  JEFFERSON  
10  10/31/14 07:00PM  H  MUSSELMAN  
11  11/07/14 07:00PM  H  OPEN  
 wins: 0   lost: 0   ties: 0
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  • Panther

    Plus we're I from we send our players To The NFL it's called talent and talent brings $$$$$ so keep talking High School !!! Lol

    • Stacy

      And you said those boys must not be good because you never heard of them, but yet they are D1? Isn't being D1 the extent of your argument about all of these other schools? You totally contradict yourself.

    • Stacy

      Panther, news flash. We're talking high school because you clicked on the "high school sports" link to get here. lol!

  • Panther

    Lol never heard of those players from martinsburgh in D 1 must not be that good metro news don't talk about them nore does charleston gazette

    • StarInWV


      You may be partially right about what you wrote, not many football players from the EP are getting D1 offers, not now or even in the past. But search the Metronews index and check how many stories about them. The teams gets plenty of coverage. And why shouldn't they? They play well as a team and they are awesomely coached and surrounded by good people who work hard to support their team. In the end, it is a program that has stood the test of time and found a formula to succeed. Players have bought into that formula and believe that if they follow it, there is nothing that can stop them. The old saying goes that success begets success and so far no one knows that better than the Bulldogs.

  • DBishop

    Coach Walker is awesome. Look at what he did at East Hardy before heading to Martinsburg. And then take a look at what his best friend, Allen Fiddler did at Moorefield. They have a system that works.

  • Life As A DuPont Panther

    I'm just gonna say this Martinsburgh only has 3 real state championships they never beat the defending state champion south charleston on the football; The other thing is that coach up there isn't doing nothing too get those kids up there in D1 and that is sad because riverside got Raheem Waiters to MU and he is starting LB GW who Martinsburgh beat couple years ago has 2 players playing D1 one @ NC and the other at WVU And another getting recruited @ wvu South Charleston has A player in the NFL in Aaronn Dobson two kids and has currently 7 kids either playing or getting recruited D1 Capital has 4 and WVU is recruiting Capital , SC , GW And STATE CHAMPION MARTINSBURGH can't get WVU or Marshall too look at their players?

    • blackorange

      Ur right , not a lot of D1 players at Martinsburg. But what that shows is , great coaching. And it not just Walker , its he's whole staff. Pluss it shows no recruiting , just great local talented high school football players

    • Wv dude

      DuPont ?? Isn't that the school that had NBA player Williams and a NFL player Moss that LOST to Martinsburg in basketball state championship??
      I don't live in the EP tired of hearing rest of state complain. Why don't they put up or shut up and play the Dogs?? How many other schools have to go outta state to find games because WV schools are too chicken s&@t to play them??

    • mike

      Maybe if those punks wouldnt have started that fight S Charleston wouldve got cracked by martinsburg everyone knows it. Coach walker is better that any coach In wv lets get that straight

    • WVUFan04

      Martinsburg has a few D1 talents from the last 4. Cedric Brown- Ohio, Eugene German-UNCC, Justin and Darren Arndt-WVU, Gary Awkard-Morehead, Deamonte Lindsay has been offered by Toledo and JMU and will have several others looking at him this year most likely, Eric Mitchell has D1 schools looking at him, along with Dylan Brewer and Eric Brown. And Martinsburg has its fair share of Professionals, Fulton Walker was the first guy in the NFL to return a kick for a touchdown in the NFL Superbowl. But football isnt about going D1 its about going to college for free by playing the sport you love and D2 can offer that.

    • Bulldog Dad

      DuPont Panther,
      Go back to school! I can barely make out what you're trying to say.
      Also, "that coach up there" has won 4 state championships with very few d1 players! Something tells me he knows what he's doing.
      I can think of 3 d1 players from the championship teams:

      1) Cedric Brown - Ohio
      2) Justin Arndt - WVU
      3) Eugene German - UNCC

      • StarInWV

        oh ...and don't forget Marqus Burrell plays for a tiny school in West Point, NY...they call it ARMY. Anyone see how Marqus just pancaked Switzer in that 2nd Championship game?

      • Bulldogs

        And Darren Arndt-WVU

      • Panther

        Y'all know dag on well martins burg only has three rings y'all never beat south chas

        • Sherando VA

          if you are going go say something make sure u have something to back it up and also well i quess u were wrong to say Martinsburg will never get passed 3 because quess what they did and now they have 4. If South Charlestion is so good then why dont South Charelstion play Martinsburg in the regualr seaosn??????????????????????

        • sugarbear12

          They beat the team that was put in front of them. They have 4. They would have beat that S Chars. team that wasn't anywhere near the 2 previous teams skill level. Barely got by a Brooke team that Martinsburg destroyed. But the dogs never got that chance.

    • Stacy

      DuPont Panther -
      First of all you said Martinsburg "only has 3 real championships"? Only? And I do believe they have 4 rings, like it or not. Martinsburg does have players going D1. Cedric Brown went D1. Eugene German went D1. Deamonte Lindsay already has a D1 offer. I'm not sure what your point is? The reason Martinsburg is so successful is they play hard as a team. You can have all the D1 players in the world, but if you can't win the title what does that even mean?

      • Bulldogs

        Martinsburgs program definitely gets players to D-1 schools. Darren and Justin Arndt play at WVU.

  • james

    All I can is the Bulldogs put on a performance at Patrick Henry, Va, they will be loaded again this year, once again they will have the toughest schedule in state, they destroy the competition in the 7 on 7 camp, mind you its been since 2009 since any team in WV has beat them, last but not least the bulldogs don't need to recruit, when you played in 8 state championship games since 2002, kinda boost your programs ability to get kids that move into your area, so I say to the rest of state, catch up or keep being left behind

  • Stacy

    Some of these comments are ridiculous! Let the boys play ball!

  • Stacy

    I'm excited to see Martinsburg play again. Every year they are strong, but have a different quality than the year/team before. After their 7 on 7 in VA, Patrick Henry's coach said this might be the best Martinsburg team he's seen. Can't wait!

  • Life of a DuPont Panther

    I'm going with #CapitalHighSchool this year

    • park101

      Nope not going with Capital because Martinsburg just looks ways too good to not even get beat by anyone. Going with martinsburg

  • Beagle Hound

    The SSAC needs to investigate criminal activity in the program and reports of recruiting and paying players. The Dawgs got good awful fast.

    • ThatGuyOverThere

      Anyone with half of a brain should know that that area in the past 15 - 20 years has really been flooded with DC folks...its called urban sprawl...The area has a lot of people..a lot of talent..nothing wrong with that at all... I am from Putnam County and doubt very seriously that anyone is paying players or recuiting...I had the option to go to 3 different schools because of where i lived..I chose Poca becasue they had the most successful program from the other 3 schools... (Ripley, Sissonville, or Poca) you can't blame kids for wanting to go to a school that has repeated success.

    • DWM


      If you were around the program at the time Coach Walker arrived, you'd have a greater understanding of his success and you wouldn't have made the comment.

      When he arrived, I think it was '98, they were horrid, with just as much talent available in the system as they have now. That talent either was underutilized or didn't play football because there was a losing mentality around the program.

      Coach Walker changed all that over time to the point that they qualified for the playoffs the second season he was there and played for the championship in 2001 for the first time. Then they were robbed in the mud bowl in 2003 when they should have won the championship and have been a fixture ever since deep into the playoffs.

      If you win and develope talent and get that talent to college, kids will gravitate to your program. That is what has happened.

    • Dean

      The last time I checked, Martinsburg reached it's first State Championship game in 2001, and since that time has played in 7 other State Title games. The Dogs also have the most wins and best record of any AAA team from that season til now. If you call growing into a powerhouse over 14 years getting "good awful fast" then you must need help measuring both time and talent!

    • Sherlock_H

      The SSAC is too busy investigating the recruiting and paying players at the state's Catholic/private schools. SSAC will get around to Class AAA eventually.

    • nick

      Theres zero recruiting going on there. Its called hard work maybe your team should try it

  • Dogs Will Be Dogs

    It takes a commitment to be good year in and year out and I see these young teenagers in the local gyms gearing up for the season while in the off season . Most are pleasant and have manners and if you ask them about the upcoming season they simply say they want to win and improve every game and play hard .

  • StarInWV

    Just need to solidify the qb position ... got to know if Carter can cut the mustard. He's not the flashy dude that Malique does but maybe Coach Walker is keeping Carter on a low key leash. We'll have to see what his arm is like and how accurate he is. Could we be seeing a transition to more of a passing offense rather than a read option?

  • sugarbear12

    Dogs will be championship contenders. Hopefully they can win 5 in a row. Huntington was only a offensive game plan away from winning. Like to see them stay humble like they usually do. Well said James character issues on every team. Winning teams just get more scrutiny. An all star team would probably win every time if they played together for a while.

  • DWM

    The team will be talented, well coached, and will win a fifth straight championship. When you take a great program, add in the best coach in the state, and add in best talent in the state, it is tough to beat.

    My suggestion, when we get to the playoff round, instead of 16 teams we should save time and play Martinsburg against an all star team made up from the other 15 teams.

    • whatamoroon

      The outcome of the north - south game should have prevented such delusional vocal vomit but since it didn't, I'll help you translate.
      Since we have the best cheating coach in the state who gets the best athletes money can buy, we should have no problem winning another state championship as long as the SSAC stays out of the eastern panhandle.

  • James

    Should be a 5 peat borrowing any injuries, as far as your comment booldogsuck, I'm pretty sure if I went around the state, I would find a lot of schools with kids that have character issues, that is why they are called kids, by your name I can tell you are jealous of the Bulldogs success, sucks knowing your team doesnt have a shot against the bulldogs, by the way the future is even brighter

  • booldogsuck

    This squad always is talented and well coached. Obviously there have been some "character issues" with several of their skill players from past teams. I guess only time will tell on the type of season they have this year.

    • Brian

      sorry m-burg, 4 is enough!!! if the cougars dont win AAA this yr, and next, something is rotten in the panhandle. too much talent in Kanawha Valley the next few yrs, playing together for too long. they'll get it done in 14'.

      • Bulldogs 101

        Hey brian good luck playing Martinsburg and if Capital is so good then why does Capital only play Martinsburg in the Playoffs and not the regular season

      • Sherando VA High school football

        i have bad news for Capital fans Martinsburg will win it again because their schedule has a playoff schedule unlike the rest of WV. go ahead Capita i dare your team to come to VA and play Sherando

      • Steubenville Ohio Big red football

        sorry but Capital might be good but it all sounds good on paper of saying they will be good. now capital needs to play martinsburg at football to see how good capital is. Hey Capital i watched martinsburg play this year and their defense is extremely fast and very physical and so Capial is going to have to bring their A game when it comes to playing Martinsburg. Im from Steubenville big red and Steubenville would come down there and roll your Capital team. but Martinsburg this year did ask Big red to play and our Coach said no our schedule was full and the truth is that Steubenville didnt want martinsburg to come to Steubnville OH and roll our big red team at our own staduim.. Our coach said yes to park but no way to Martinsburg so what does that tell ya

      • park101

        from the wheeling area. let me ask you a question Brain would Capital ever play the out of state teams that Martinsburg plays like State College pa that has over 100 people on their team and plays football with some of the toughest PA football programs in the state. also Tuscoroa VA has over 100 kids and is in the Playoffs every year in VA, Sherando VA, and HD woodson which are Championchip contenders. does any body not relize that no WV teams except Martinsburg will play those teams. if those out of state teams where in WV playing foortball it would be Martinsburg and one of those teams in the Championchip game. I guarntee everyone that those out of state teams would destroy every high school football team in the state of WV except for Martinsburg. dont know if anyone knows this but i have been to a WVU mountaineer practices and been to the Martinsburg practices and i will tell you Martinsburg runs their football practices like the same as what WVU does. the practices are very similar. this is a fact because i have been to both. Martinsburgs football practices are like a college camp. if the bulldogs win the 1st 4 games no one in WV no matter how good Capital or Hunigton is will even come close to Martinsburg.

      • jm

        Sorry bud but Capital couldn't get it done against Martinsburg in what was supposed to be a down year for martinsburg . They aren't going to get it done against a reloaded Dawgs team. This years squad will be leaps and bounds better than last years