Preps Preview: Marion County Warriors

Preps Preview: Marion County Warriors

August 17th, 2012 in Sports - Preps

Fan's guide to this year's Marion County Warriors

Coach: Mac McCurry (First year here, 220-65 overall) Stadium: Bill Baxter Stadium Address: 160 Ridley Avenue, Jasper, TN 37347

Three strengths

1) New attitude. A coaching change typically translates into excitement, and Mac McCurry's past success has the program buzzing that he will turn things around.

2) Experience. After taking their lumps with a young group of players last year, the Warriors now have experience and another year of growth to help.

3) Work ethic. The struggles of last year have translated into a hungry group of young players willing to buy into McCurry's system.

Three concerns

1) Mental hurdle. While there is excitement now, McCurry worries what will happen when things go against a team that got beaten down mentally as well as on the scoreboard last year.

2) Defense. The Warriors allowed 50-plus points four times last year and gave up an average of 45. McCurry changed the defensive alignment in hopes of slowing opponents down.

3) Lack of speed. The Warriors play in a district where both South Pittsburg and Lookout Valley have multiple players with game-breaking speed. McCurry lists just two players with sub-4.6 speed in the 40-yard dash.

By the numbers

1 - Win for the Warriors last year, the worst season in program history.

5 - Head coaches Marion has had in the last 15 years. Before that, Ken Colquette led the program for 16 seasons.

17 - Total starters returning. The Warriors had to play a lot of inexperienced players last year but should benefit from that this season.

Three questions with ...

ERIC QUALLS

(Senior receiver)

Q: What's the biggest difference so far that makes you believe this season will be an improvement?

A: The attitude that Coach McCurry has brought in. Everything is positive and it's about doing it right and with a quick pace. He wants to see us get better, and we're pushing ourselves to do that.

Q: What are the team's goals for this season?

A: Just to win games. We want to make the playoffs and make up for last year.

Q: What makes Friday nights special to you?

A: Just being out there with my teams, competing. That's a great feeling.

Recent history

A season that was expected to end in another playoff appearance instead turned into the worst in program history as the Warriors missed the postseason for the first time in a decade. The Warriors defense gave up an average of 45 points per game. Beating county rival Whitwell in a shootout was the only win of the season, which led to a coaching change.

Here's a look at the regular-season win total for the last five years:

Season

2011--(1)

2010-----(5)

2009-------(7)

2008---------(11)

2007-----(5)

Roster

2 Cameron Foshee Freshman

6 Kyle Pedigo Sophomore

8 Chase Hamilton Junior

9 Bradley Baxter Freshman

10 Blake Brooks Sophomore

11 Matt Zeman Senior

12 Miles Gray Senior

13 Chrisitan Stephens Freshman

14 Patton Grooms Senior

15 Hamilton Shoemaker Junior

16 Logan Walters Freshman

20 Blake Zeman Sophomore

21 Josh Henderson Freshman

22 Josh Cantrell Freshman

23 Brandon Scott Freshman

24 Deion Riley Sophomore

26 Dylan Hale Freshman

27 Jayme Ford Senior

28 Lex Muir Junior

31 Baily Bradford Freshman

34 Chris Reitenbaugh Senior

35 Chandler Willis Sophomore

37 Patrick Bradford Sophomore

38 Brannon Keef Sophomore

39 Hayden Fowler Junior

41 Bryce Massengale Freshman

44 Kyle Jenkins Sohpomore

45 Jeb McCullough Senior

50 Jacob Vinson Senior

52 Jake Murphy Senior

53 Dakota Huffstuttler Senior

54 Trevor Romans Senior

55 Daylen Brown Senior

57 Austin Thomas Freshman

58 Jessy Stonesifer Junior

60 Matthew Alder Sophomore

62 Brodey Pemberton Junior

64 Drew Grisham Freshman

66 Hayden Tudors Sophomore

67 Peyton Jones Sophomore

70 Hunter McCulley Senior

71 Taylor Condra Junior

73 Austin McGrew Sophomore

74 Seth Cox Sophomore

75 Mason Hargis Junior

76 Tyler Wildermuth Freshman

77 Jordan Lehman Freshman

81 Hunter Kelley Sophomore

85 Eric Qualls Senior

87 Clay Oshields Junior

89 Dalton McElroy Junior