Javon Slate

Sam Houston’s Javon Slate tips a pass intended for St. Louis’ Jeremiah Ceasar during the Broncos 2017 season opener at Matt Walker Memorial Stadium.

Sam Houston rebounded from a 1-9 2016 season to go 4-6 last year, just missing the playoffs.

The Broncos return nearly a dozen starters, but will have several new faces this season.

Here is a look at five Broncos to keep an eye on this season.

Gerron Duhon Sr. RB 5-11 190

After staring at Washington-Marion last fall, Duhon transferred to Sam Houston in the spring and has made an immediate impact by giving the Broncos stability at running back. Sam Houston used nearly a half-dozen backs last year. At W-M, Duhon, who recently committed to Yale, rushed for 136 yards and two touchdowns and caught 27 passes for 377 yards and two scores. In the spring, Duhon helped Sam Houston’s 4x100 and 4x200-meter relays teams post SWLA top-five times.

“He was able to go through spring football with us,” Sam Houston head coach Chad Paulk said. “He brings something that we were lacking last year.

“Last year we went through four or five tailbacks, trying to figure out who can take that job. He has a great knowledge of the game and his speed doesn’t hurt.”

Luke Yuhasz Fr. QB 6-3 190

Sam Houston will turn to a promising young quarterback this year in Yuhasz. At 6-3 and 190 pounds, he doesn’t look like a typical freshman and has exception arm strength.

“No. 1, Luke has the size for a quarterback,” Paulk said. “He is a 14-year old that can throw the football like a big-timmer.

“His arm strength is phenomenal as well as his knowledge of the game. He reminds me a lot of the one we had last year in Kyle Bartley. Luke is going to go through his ups and downs, but it is just about him staying composed and taking it one play at a time.”

Tavyen Grice Jr. WR/DB 6-0 185

Like Duhon, Grice transferred to Sam Houston from Washington-Marion where he caught 26 passes for 306 yards and one touchdown. With his speed, Grice, who has caught onto the Broncos’ system quickly, could play on both sides of the ball.

“He has great speed and can run great routes,” Paulk said. “He can play both sides of the ball whether it be safety, cornerback or wide receiver.

“He has shown that he can do all of that for us. During the (short time) we have had him, he has really bought in and learned the system. He has done a phenomenal job.”

Mason Trahan Sr. LB 5-9 207

Trahan played on the JV squad this year, but has quickly cemented himself as one of the Broncos’ starting linebackers over the summer.

“He has had a wonderful spring,” Paulk said. “He was a JV player for us last year but he has come a long way.

“He has great leadership and fast reads up front. His first step is as good as anybody’s. Defensively, his reaction is as good as anybody’s and he a great asset to have right there.”

Javon Slate Sr. CB 5-9 170

Slate, who also plays basketball for the Broncos, played football for the first time last year, starting cornerback. Slate has exceptional speed and showed it in the spring by leading the Broncos to a SWLA top-five time in the 4x100 and 4x200-meter relay. He also had the third best distance in the long jump in SLWA at 21-7 ¼.

“He played football for the first year last year,” Paulk said. “He is a speedy little cornerback.

“He is a quick learner. The thing with Slate is that he has a lot of speed on the edge like an athletic receiver that plays full-time defense. He can come in and spot play on offense.”