Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 24, 2008
By Angie Ledbetter
Even though coaching changes can be stressful to seniors, North Delta’s Britt Lawrence is not experiencing that feeling this year.
Last year’s line coach Lance Thomas moved to head coach for the upcoming season. Brad Wilson will remain as assistant and they are joined by Hayden Sullivant, a former North Delta standout.
“Coach Thomas was my position coach so he just moved to my head coach,” Lawrence said. “Coach Wilson has been there since I started school there. To me, they moved around a little bit but nobody changed. It was easy for everybody to accept.”
Lawrence will wear No. 14 on his jersey for his senior year as a linebacker and tight end. He is 5’11”, weighing196 pounds.
There are 10 seniors on the 2008 Green Wave team and Lawrence expects to be a significant part when he hits the field this fall.
He expects being a senior will be a lot different.
“It’s sort of weird,” he said.
Lawrence feels that it is a privilege and an honor to be a leader on the team.
“I think about the players before me who were great leaders like Brandon Ciaramataro, Cody Hallmark and Dakota Mabry. Now I hope that I can be a leader like they were. If anybody on the team looks up to me, it’s because of my playing experience,” Lawrence said.
He has been playing at North Delta since ninth grade and earned a starting position his sophomore year.
The seniors know each other so well because they have been playing together since their freshman year, according to Lawrence.
“We have a senior quarterback, a lot of senior linemen, and some senior wide receivers,” he said. “So it will be just like playing since junior high.”
Lawrence remembered the spring game with Hebron Christian and feels North Delta would have won had it been a regular season game.
“We played a very good team in the spring with Hebron Christian and they have a lot of good athletes on their team. I think it would have been a different outcome in a regular season game because we played well.”
The Green Wave team is working out three days a week from 7 to 10 a.m. and from 4 to 8 p.m. They have team nights on Thursday where they do 7-on-7, which is a passing camp. The linemen work out separately. Tuesday is team night for the running backs and wide receivers while the linemen do their normal workouts. The team is also planning to attend a 7-on-7 camp at Clarkdale’s Lee Academy each week in July where they will compete against other teams.
Lawrence described summer workouts as twice as hard since he has been at North Delta.
“It’s harder because we have a different workout. It’s been a lot of work but it’s paying off with good results. Everybody is getting stronger, faster, and more physical. We are all ready for the season to start.”
A possible disadvantage Lawrence noted on the team was the youth in the offensive backfield.
“We’re strong defensively and we seem to be strong offensively. I think that the ones that we have will figure it out soon. We just have to practice and get in some game situations. Once everybody gets thrown in their game situations, they’ll see what it’s like and they’ll pick it up fast.”
On the other hand, he feels the offensive line is the team’s strong point, along with the senior leadership. Not every team can brag on its offensive line.
“We probably have the biggest offensive line in 1A in the state,” Lawrence said
Individually, Lawrence wants to improve his speed.
“I’m working on it very hard this summer so I can get better than last year and be ready for this year’s season.”
North Delta historically has been in one of the toughest districts in the division. This year is no exception. Lawrence feels the toughest non-district opponent on the schedule will be 2A Marshall on September 19.
“They are always tough,” he said. “Tunica, who is in our district, will be returning a lot of good players. Desoto will be very good this year again. Tunica will be our toughest opponent in the district.”
As a senior, Lawrence has set his goal on going to the state championship round. North Delta has not played for a state championship since 2001.
“In my tenth grade year, we made the first round of playoffs and then we made the second round of playoffs my junior year,” he said. “This year instead of stopping in the third round of playoffs, we should make it our goal to win state. Our secondary goal is to win the district championship and have no injuries. I believe that we have a great chance at winning the north and then somebody in the south will have their hands full if we make it to state.”
The Green Wave team will do a lot of traveling this season with only four home games. Four of those road games will be played in Arkansas.
“It will be fun traveling and I think that we play better on the road,” said Lawrence. “Last year we went undefeated on the road and I think that my sophomore year we did, too, except for the playoffs. Really, I think that we should all buy houses in Arkansas so that we would have a place to stay on Friday nights. We have a lot of fan support that travels with us so that helps us.”
Lawrence’s senior year will be very special for another reason. His younger brother, Mikel, will be playing football with him once again. Mikel is also a junior linebacker and tight end. The two played pee wee and junior high football together.
“This will be the first time that we’ve played together since my freshman year and it will be good to have him back,” said Lawrence. “It has felt weird not playing with him every year.”
The brothers will have a lot of family support on the sideline. Their parents, Ronnie and Shira Moudy, and younger sister, Kristen Moudy, are at every game, home and away. According to Britt, their parents always bring people with them and invite other people to the games.
“I always talk to my dad after the game about it,” said Britt. “I am glad that they are always there for me.”
Britt attended a prospect camp at the University of the South in Swanee, Tenn. this past weekend. He is thinking about attending college there and would like to play football.
“It was fun to tryout and see if they like me and want me on their football team,” said Lawrence.
When not playing football, Lawrence likes to ride his jet skis, his knee board and listen to his music.