CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Butler quarterback Christian LeMay has been named the preseason player of the year by NCPreps.com, but the Bulldogs began practice Monday without him.
While LeMay appeals a 30-day suspension by Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, sophomore Riley Ferguson will take the snaps.
Lemay is accused of violating the CMS code of conduct.
"We just got to move on as a football team," said Coach Mike Newsome. "We've thought about this the whole time. Our other quarterbacks are working extremely hard. Riley Ferguson has looked real good for us this summer and the preseason stuff that we've done. Now that we've started, he's got a chance to be a great quarterback."
Newsome said his team will lean on great defense and top-notch running backs.
Despite his youth, Ferguson has already drawn recruiting interest from powerhouse programs like Louisiana State University.
"I think our game plan goes in being the same. He's a very good quarterback," Newsome said. "He's one of those guys in his career, or in his life, hasn't lost a lot of games. We'll see if that continues on the varsity level."
Butler begins the season August 20 at Mount Tabor.
August 20 - Butler at Mount Tabor
Sept. 3 - Butler at Vance
Sept. 10 - Richmond County at Butler
Sept. 17 - Butler at Hibriten
Sept. 24 - Butler at Myers Park
Oct. 1 - Rocky River at Butler
Oct. 8 - East Meck at Butler
Oct. 15 - Butler at Ardrey Kell
Oct. 22 - Providence at Butler
Oct. 29 - Butler at South Meck
Nov. 5 - Independence vs. Butler (at Memorial Stadium)