Gridiron Guide 2012

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Special Section to The Lebanon Democrat, Mt. Juliet News, Hartsville VidetteLocal football Team Previews and 2012 SchedulesGridiron Guide 2012Cover photo by Dallus Whitfield2 G r i d i r o n Gu i d e 2 0 1 2Week-by-Week Schedule of High School games 3Friendship Christian Schoool Commanders 4Lebanon High School Blue 6Mt. Juliet Christian Academy 8Mt. Juliet High School Golden 10McClain Christian 12Trousdale County High School Yellow 14Watertown High School Purple 16Wilson Central High School Wildcats 18Cumberland University Bulldogs 20SEC 21Tennessee Titans 22Table of ContentsG r i d i r o n G u i d e 2 0 1 2 3WEEK 0Aug. 17Lebanon at Mt. JulietWilson Central at GallatinWatertown at Cannon CountyFriendship Christian at Donelson ChristianMt. Juliet Christian at CommunityTrousdale County vs. Greenwood atWarren Central [Ky.] 5:30 p.m.Aug. 18McClain Christian at Franklin ChristianWEEK 1Aug. 24Franklin County at LebanonWilson Central at LaVergneWhite House Heritage at Friendship Christian,7:30 p.m.McGavock at Mt. JulietRed Boiling Springs at Mt. Juliet ChristianMcClain Christian at Pleasant View, 6 p.m.Macon County at Trousdale CountyWeek 2Aug. 30Huntland at WatertownMt. Juliet at PortlandEzell-Harding at Mt. Juliet ChristianAug. 31Lebanon at GallatinHendersonville at Wilson CentralFriendship Christian at GordonsvilleTrousdale County at Jackson CountySept. 1Sacred Heart at McClain Christian, 2 p.m.Week 3Sept. 6Tennessee School for the Deaf atMcClain Christian, 6 p.m.Sept. 7Lebanon at GlencliffShelbyville at Wilson CentralWatertown at Red Boiling SpringsClay County at Friendship Christian, 7:30 p.m.Mt. Juliet at LaVergneMt. Juliet Christian at Clarksville AcademyTrousdale County at GordonsvilleWeek 4Sept. 14Wilson Central at LebanonPickett County at WatertownJackson County at Friendship Christian, 7:30 p.m.Beech at Mt. JulietMt. Juliet Christian at Tri-Cities Christian,6 p.m. CentralMcClain Christian at Riverside ChristianWeek 5Sept. 21Lebanon at CookevilleWilson Central at CentennialMonterey at WatertownPickett County at Friendship Christian, 7:30 p.m.Kings Academy at Mt. Juliet ChristianMcClain Christian at Currey Ingram junior varsityClay County at Trousdale CountyWeek 6Sept. 28Station Camp at LebanonPortland at Wilson CentralWatertown at Clay CountyTrousdale County at Friendship Christian, 7:30 p.m.Mt. Juliet at GallatinMt. Juliet Christian at Zion ChristianSept. 29McClain Christian at St. Andrews-Sewanee, 2 p.m.Week 7Oct. 5Lebanon at PortlandBeech at Wilson CentralFriendship Christian at WatertownStation Camp at Mt. JulietPickett County at Trousdale CountyOct. 6Aaron Academy at McClain Christian, 2 p.m.Week 8Oct. 12Watertown at GordonsvilleCookeville at Mt. JulietDonelson Christian at Mt. Juliet ChristianTrousdale County at MontereyOct. 13Evangel Christian at McClain Christian, 2 p.m.Week 9Oct. 19Beech at LebanonWilson Central at Station CampWatertown at Trousdale CountyFriendship Christian at Red Boiling SpringsMt. Juliet at HendersonvilleMt. Juliet Christian at Middle Tennessee ChristianMcClain Christian at Holloway, 4 p.m.Week 10Oct. 25Mt. Juliet at Wilson CentralOct. 26Hendersonville at LebanonJackson County at WatertownMonterey at Friendship ChristianMt. Juliet Christian at Franklin Road AcademyRed Boiling Springs at Trousdale CountyWeek-by-Week Schedule 2012All kickoffs 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted.McClain Christian home games atStroud Gwynn Field.4 G r i d i r o n Gu i d e 2 0 1 2The year after a team wins a state champi-onship, the focus usually falls on the key return-ing players.ButatFriendshipChristian, thesummerspotlight has fallen on a newcomer.A.J. Long transferred to the Possum Townschool this summer after passing for over 6,500yards as a freshman and sophomore at Pius X, aClass A Catholic school in Bangor, Pa. He wasonpacetobreaktheKeystoneStatescareerpassing record by the time he was a senior. Buthis transfer to the Volunteer State has already at-tracted the attention of area schools VanderbiltandTennessee. FloridaState, Oregon, TexasA&M, Nebraska, BaylorandSouthCarolinahave also contacted him.But itll be two years before he plays on Sat-urdays. For right now, hell transfer Friendshipspower offense which helped win the Command-ers their first state championship last fall back tothe spread attack employed during the LeeSweeney era in the mid-2000s.Hes done well, Commander coach JohnMcNeal said of the 6-foot-1, 175-pound jun-ior. I got to see him in game action. He hasexperience. Hes been a starter his freshmanand sophomore years. He knows the game. Heunderstands coverages.He has as strong an arm as Lee [whosigned with Louisville before setting severalpassing records at Tennessee Tech, where hesnow a graduate assistant quarterbacks coach].Lees advantage was he was 6-4. A.J.s is hecan run.Duringhistwodecadesat Friendship,McNeal has run just about every offense avail-able to suit his personnel. Longs arrival meansthe Commander attack will look vastly differ-ent from the one which steamrolled Dresdenin last Decembers BlueCross Bowl.Well definitely open up and do somethings we did with Lee [Sweeney] and somethingswedidwithLeeMaasen[aformerthree-sport star with a build more similar toLongs who favored running]. Well still runsome power stuff... Teams loaded the box lastyear. [A.J.] will make it a little harder for peo-ple to do that.Long will step into a huddle with plentyof talent returningfromthestatechamps.Sophomore Steven Hollis [5-9, 160] will moveup into the feature back role with classmatesAustin Taylor [5-10, 180] and Cody Wallace[5-10, 205] playing some fullback.Our three running backs, as freshmenlast year, probably would have played more [ifnotforthepresenceofthegraduatedKyleWood and Dekolas Reeves], McNeal said.Theoneswhowill most benefit fromLongs arrival figure to be the receivers. Sen-iors Cale Mitchell [5-11, 175] and Ste-fan Remus [6-0, 185] are the top re-turnees. Classmate Hunter Watts [5-10,160] has already proved his mettle intwo other sports at FCS since transfer-ringlast winter fromGordonsville,where he did not play football. Sopho-moreParker Pinnell [6-3, 170] andjunior Michael Hawks [5-10, 170] willalso try to move up the depth chart.Walker and Pinnell will also seetime at tight end.Wegot somegoodreceivers,goodhands, goodspeed, McNealsaid. Our line is probably the most ex-perienced part.Most of the line which flatteneddefenses last year will be back to passprotect for Long. Though two startersgraduated, all six who are projected forthe rotation played at least some dur-ing the 12-3 2011 season. A couple ofthem have even shed a few pounds fordifferent reasons.SeniorleftguardIanIsbellhaslost 25 pounds to get down to 260, togo with a 6-2 1/2 frame. Seniorfriendship christian commandersState champs welcomePennsylvania blue-chip quarterbackFriendship ChristianCommandersSCHEDULEAug. 17 at Donelson Christian 7 p.m.Aug. 24 White House Heritage 7:30 p.m.Aug. 31 *at Gordonsville 7 p.m.Sept. 7 *Clay County 7:30 p.m.Sept. 14 *Jackson County 7:30 p.m.Sept. 21 *Pickett County 7:30 p.m.Sept. 28 *Trousdale County 7:30 p.m.Oct. 5 *at Watertown 7 p.m.Oct. 19 *at Red Boiling Springs 7 p.m.Oct. 26 *Monterey 7 p.m.*Region 4-A gameNick Norton gets some water during a break. PHOTO DALLUS WHITFIELDCale Mitchell jumps to grab a pass. PHOTO DALLUS WHITFIELDBy ANDY REED Sports Editorwww.ligonbobo.comHave AGreat Season!G r i d i r o n G u i d e 2 0 1 2 5tackle/centers Greg Norton [6-1, 240] and Ben Dunn[6-0, 255] are also back, as is senior right guard TannerMartin [5-11, 215], who has dropped some weight inpreparation to play linebacker. Sophomore left tackleAndrew Wood [6-4, 280] and classmate center ColtonGaines [6-3, 225] also saw some action in the shadowsof their now-graduated big brothers [Connor Gaines andKyle Wood].Weve got a big line, McNeal said.On defense, six Commanders will rotate among thethree line spots Isbell, Wood, Gaines, Dunn, Norton andsophomore Jeff Cherry [6-0, 200].Martin will drop back from the line to middle line-backer with Taylor and Walker at the stack and juniorJustin Truszkowski [5-8, 165] at outside backer.OfalltheCommanders, itsTruszkowski, whosbeen at FCS a few years, who has a previous connectionwithLong, havingplayedwithhimas8-year-oldsinPennsylvania with A.J.s father coaching them.Three-fourths of the secondary return with Hollisand Remus at the corners and Mitchell at safety. Wattsand Pinnell will try to replace the BlueCross Bowls De-fensive Player of the Game Dalton Patterson at free safety.Our defense was the mainstaylast year, McNeal said.Mitchell, whose punting into the wind