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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  • brookefan

    being from brooke i would like to see steubenville big red play martinsburg in football but will never happen because steubenville would get run over and rolled over by the talented powerhouse of the bulldogs from wv. Martinsburg would run up the score on big red and big reds defense wouldnt be able to contain their offense and big reds offense wouldnt be able to do anything on martinsburgs defense because one thing martinsburg has is speed and size. on both sides of the ball. right when martinsburg steps on to the field and steubenville sees those 2 guys that are 440 and 400 that are in the middle of the defense they wouldnt know what to do and also the rest of their defense is very fast and would shut big red out .if park rolled big red last year 42-22 imaine what martinsburg would do to big red.
    its bad enough that big red wouldnt play martinsburg but then they go and play the Masslin Tigers of OH. what does that tell ya????? the dogs played Tuscoroa VA last year a 5A level school in VA and which is the highest level in VA. since they only lost by 1 point to the highest level in VA then they would compete in OHIO for sure. martinsburg only lost to 1 point to a team that has 105 players on their team. i would like to see the Martinsburg Bulldogs and the Masslin Tigers going at it in football. would be intersteing to watch. if martinsburg only lost by one point to a 5A level school in VA then they would give the Ohio schools more competion to deal with.
    Martinsburg can compete in any state no matter how good that team is. if they beat Tuscoroa this year and state college no team in wv will even come close to beating them.

  • Don

    I heard that the best team didn't win last year, yeah that's the problem with the current format. The current format requires the teams to play one another to see who wins and moves on. Maybe next year the SSAC can change the format so the playoffs can be done on paper and the winners can be chosen by the experts.

    • really

      sour grapes...get over it!!

  • Walk with a Panther

    I'm gonna say a thousand until people understand MARTINSBURGH BULLDOGS NEVER BEAT SOUTH CHARLESTON BLACK EAGLES NEVER!!!!

    • Charlie Don't Surf

      Hey ole Walk,

      "I'm gonna say a thousand until people understand MARTINSBURGH BULLDOGS NEVER BEAT SOUTH CHARLESTON BLACK EAGLES NEVER!!!!"

      Let's put it this way and say a thousand times so you'll understand, SOUTH CHARLESTON BLACK EAGLES NEVER BEAT THE 4, COUNT THEM 4, TIMES HIGH SCHOOL STATE CHAMPIONS MARTINSBURG BULLDOGS!!!!

    • Don

      First of all if they are so damn good why weren't they in the championship game last year. Want to run with the big dawgs, win and you will get your shot.

    • EP Power

      First of all,you are incorrect when you say that Martinsburg has never beaten SC. They did in the playoffs in the mid 2000's. Secondly, Martinsburg absolutely destroyed Brooke, a team that SC that just barely squeeked by. That Martinsburg defense was arguably their best defense since starting this title run so points for SC would have been at a minimum. As Moorefield01 stated below, people don't realize what type of schedule Martinsburg plays which has definitely prepared them for the playoffs and state championship games. Folks in Charleston need to realize there is some good football being played in other parts of the state and in/around the border states. You would think after four straight state championships folks would accept that fact and quit making excuses.

    • Mburg

      Walk like a panther - there is nothing wrong with giving credit where it is due? Mburg could have won the championship the year before they faced Brook but they did not. They experienced adversity after losing their quarterback - Cam Puller - they used the adversity and hard work to propeller them to their first championship. They also had a lot of talent. Pretty much like the group coming up after 2015. They have some real talent coming behind this current group. Not taking anything from this group but they have already proven themselves?

    • EP_Haters

      And South Charleston never beat Martinsburg that year, did they? Shut up already. It would have been a great game to watch, but S Charleston blew their opportunity by playing players they shouldn't have. Obviously their coach didn't think they were good enough to beat Brooke without a couple players that lost their tempers the week before.....the same Brooke team that never crossed midfield against Martinsburg.

      Stop living in the past. You can't change the fact that the Dogs are 4 time defending state champs, with a great shot at 5 as they will be the favorites this year. All you can do is cry about what could've/should've been. Boo hoo...

  • Moorefield01

    I'm not sure if people realize how tough of a schedule Martinsburg plays. HD Woodson won their DC State Championship by like 30, had 2 MAJOR D1 Cornerbacks (D'Andre Payne tennessee, and Du'wayne Johnson V-Tech commit) a MLB committed to Florida Atlantic I think. Sherando played in the VA 4A State Championship and only losses were to Mburg and VA 4A Champ Dinwiddie, State College PA a 4A school made the playoffs and had over 100 kids on the roster, Tuscarora VA made it into the VA 5A state playoffs and will return all players but 3 starters, and they had 100 kids on the roster last season. Morgantown was obviously good, Washington made the playoffs and Martinsburg chewed them up like a toy, Musselman, Hedgesville, and Jefferson were all a win away from the playoffs.

  • central101

    im not from Martinsburg, from wheeling but what I can say is last year The Martinsburg team asked Wheeling Park to play and the Wheeling Park coach told the Martinsburg coach no we don't want to play you this year. yet wheeling park did play Big red but not Martinsburg. If wheeling park said no to Martinsburg but then said yes to big red then that means that Martinsburg team is a huge powerhouse team and can roll everyone over here in the Northern Panhandle of WV and the teams in the Wheeling Area. In Fact 2 years ago Martinsburg asked Steubenville to play and Steubenville would not even play them and said that their schedule was full which it wasn't. For the People that are talking bad about Martinsburg please stop because they have a great football program over there and play way more tougher teams outside the state of WV then any of the other schools do. that's why they win Championships every year because they play a playoff schedule right off the bat and people have told me that their football practices are insane and extremely hard and someone commented and said they practice just as hard as some colleges do. if they do win the 1st 4 games against State College, DC, and two VA teams they will win It again because no team in WV except them could even come close to beating state college, or the 2 VA teams. all these teams they play outside the State are all in the top 5 in their conference. until a WV team is just as good as State College or VA teams no one in WV will be able to beat them or come close to beating them. Hats off to Huntington for playing tough and keeping up with them. This years team is going to be even way better then last year. Hope WV is ready for Martinsburg because they are going to come even harder this year then last year.

    • StarInWV

      ok ok...but Steubenville? I mean really Steubenville? I am not inclined to think that AD Redd or Coach Walker would go that far to play that caliber of team. Besides they (Steubenville) hasn't been the same since that scandal from a couple of years ago. If he wanted an out of state challenge, he only needs to travel to Middletown MD.

      • bulldogs101

        they did call the steubenville big red football coach and asked big red to play but steubenville didnt want any part of playing martinsburg.

      • Dogsfan07

        No offense to anyone but I am so sick of hearing about Middletown that's all I hear about from my buddies in md is Knuth couldn't beat Middletown got a chance to see them play last year and was not very impressed they were very slow don't think they could have kept up.

        • StarInWV

          No offense taken but who else really enjoys the success that Middletown has in Western MD, Fort Hill, Allegheny? They all say no thanks to Martinsburg these days. Personally, I would have preferred to see Middletown play Martinsburg rather than Westminster a couple of seasons ago. Middletown has a winning program and has succeeded much in the same way Martinsburg has. I am guessing it would never be a possibility for Walker as long as Middletown is classified as a AA opponent in WV.

    • sportfourteen

      I don't usually comment but thanks for looking at the entire picture. Our kids and coaches work hard year round to be the best. Nothing is given to the dogs it's all earned.

  • Rah B

    Martinsburg recruits kids...really???? Im sure parents are lining their kids up to go to school in a state where you have to sell yourself to a D1 school to get noticed. Maybe if the Kanawah Valley had coaches who could carry Walkers jock they may have win a title or two. Quit crying.

  • Panther

    Dog fan I can't read??? It doesn't surprise me at all

    • Panther

      Dog fan you can't read doesn't surprise me

  • Panther

    Lol Stacy we'll see do against MARSHALL

  • Dogsfan

    Panther please do us s favor and go back to school and learn how to spell and type because I can't read a word you are typing. When it comes to football you can d1 players across the board on the team but if they don't play together it doesn't mean anything. Football is about 11 kids playing together key word together that's ejy mburg wins because the boys work harder and play harder than anyone else in the state good luck to all the teams this year.

  • Dogsfan

    You could easily make the case that this years mburg team should be better than last years. Last years team was very one dimensional with a so so defense. Martinsburg passing game should be very good this year Carter is one heck if a player and defense should be a lot better.

  • 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