The T.C. Williams football team won five of its final six games, developed a potent offense led by sophomore quarterback Alec Grosser and posted the program’s first winning season since 1995. But with all the Titans accomplished in 2010, it wasn’t enough to snap the school’s postseason drought, which reached 20 seasons.
TC defeated Lee 45-6 on Nov. 5, improving the Titans’ record to 6-4, including 5-2 in the Patriot District. TC needed help to make the playoffs, however, and the help didn’t arrive. A trio of 6-4 teams — Westfield, Fairfax and Langley — claimed the No. 6, 7 and 8 spots, respectively, while TC and rival West Potomac were left on the outside looking in with the same record.
"The way we were playing, we were dominating," Grosser said. "I feel like if we had gotten in the playoffs, we would have went far. We were playing real good football. Unfortunately, we needed some people to lose, we needed some people to win and it didn’t happen."
Grosser took over as the team’s starting quarterback in week four against Lake Braddock, a game TC lost 49-12. From that point, the Titans went 5-1 with No. 13 at quarterback and the offense averaged 31 points per game.
Grosser completed 108 of 183 passes (59 percent) for 1,240 yards and 14 touchdowns. He was intercepted seven times, four of which came against West Potomac. He also scored a pair of rushing touchdowns.
"We’re going to have this taste in our mouth next season," Grosser said of missing the playoffs. "Hopefully, we come out with the same fire. … I know as I get older, people are going to start expecting more things. I’ve just got to do what they expect."
Grosser said he felt more comfortable as the season progressed.
"It was completely different," Grosser said. "Obviously, [I had] a lot more confidence, confidence in my teammates."
TC will lose its top pass-catching targets to graduation: seniors Tyrell Sitton and Will Rossi. Sitton hauled in 40 receptions for 546 yards and six touchdowns. Rossi caught 26 passes for 417 yards and seven scores.
The Titans’ leading rusher, junior Zaquan Summers, will return. Summers totaled 830 yards and eight touchdowns while averaging more than 6 yards per carry.
Senior linebacker Damien Benton led TC with 119 tackles despite sitting out the season opener against Robinson and most of the week two matchup with Mount Vernon. He also intercepted three passes, recovered three fumbles and scored three touchdowns. Senior linebacker Deontre Sanders recorded 102 tackles, four sacks, three interceptions and scored two touchdowns despite missing the opener against Robinson. Senior defensive lineman Emmanuel Sarpong led the Titans with six sacks.
TC will also lose senior offensive and defensive lineman Jay Whitmire, a Division I recruit at offensive tackle.
TC’s winning record was the school’s second since 1990, when the Titans finished 11-1 and was the regional runner-up. TC won state titles in 1971, 1984 and 1987.
— Jon Roetman