South Panola football

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Tigers will stick with run game, coach says

Banquet changed to high school cafeteria

By Myra Bean

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“They want to stay at championship level,” said South Panola head football coach Lance Pogue of the upcoming senior players. “Our practices have been really good. Everything has been positive. I feel good about it.”

The 4-time defending state champion South Panola football team is under the direction of a new head coach for the first time in five years.

South Panola holds a state record of winning 60 straight games, and ended the season ranked No. 1 in the state and No. 9 nationally by the USA Today.

Pogue is going through his first spring practice with the team and reporting positive feedback.

The team will travel to Clinton to play in a jamboree Thursday, May 17 with Clinton and Provine to end the spring practice season.

The junior varsity team will play at 4:30 p.m. and the high school at 6 p.m.

“The kids have been real, real enthusiastic and receptive about the new coaches,” Pogue said.

Pogue said the team is working on some things offensively that are a “little bit” different in some areas.

“A lot is the same, too,” he said.

Rumors abound about a possible four-wide scheme (using four wide receivers).

“All the stuff you hear about might sound good, but we are trying to run the football,” Pogue said. “We are doing some things formation wise but really and truly we are going to run the ball.

“That is the strength of this team,” Pogue added. “We feel like the offensive line and running backs are the absolute strength of this team.”

Coach Willis Wright remains the head of the defense for the upcoming year. Pogue said there was no change there.

As for the level the team is playing, Pogue said they are right on schedule.

He is free with praise of the upcoming senior class.

“They have stepped up and taken some leadership roles,” Pogue said.

Upcoming junior David Renfroe has been getting the most snaps at the starting quarterback role with Mario Nash as the backup.

Pogue said Nash will start at the wide receiver position.

Members of the offensive line have named themselves the “Bulldozer.”

The only offensive lineman graduating was Hunter Bailey.

One of the team leaders, upcoming senior offensive lineman Cameron Wagner, attended a combine at LSU recently.

South Panola opens the season at Vicksburg August 31, playing Warren Central in the Red River Classic.

The first home game is September 7 against Clarksdale. September 21 remains open, but Pogue said he is working to fill that date.

The Tigers will have their annual football banquet Friday, May 18 at the school cafeteria at 6:30 p.m. The banquet was moved from the National Guard Armory.