Glencoe takes on J.B. Pennington
Thu. September 01, 2011 at 10:53 p.m. | By Nick Johnston Sports Writer
Don’t talk to Glencoe coach Lee Ozmint about offensive and defensive schemes.
“Schemes are all good until somebody gets hit in the mouth,” he said. “Once somebody gets hit in the mouth, then all of the sudden schemes go out the window, and then it becomes a football game.”
Ozmint has been preaching physicality to his Yellow Jackets this week as they prepare to host J.B. Pennington tonight in a Class 3A, Region 6 contest.
“We have to play physical football, regardless of what offense we run and regardless of what defense we run,” Ozmint said. “If we don’t, we’re not playing Glencoe football.”
Despite what Ozmint described as “a lot of jitters,” the Yellow Jackets (1-0, 1-0) rolled to a 42-10 win over White Plains last week. The team’s effort was where it needed to be, Ozmint said, but there are several things he would like to see improved heading into Week 2.
“I was pleased with the effort, overall, but what I was not pleased with was execution,” he said.
Offensively, Ozmint wants improved blocking around the edge and better technique used by the offensive linemen. Even something as simple as carrying out a fake in the backfield, Ozmint wants better execution on. Defensive end play also needs to improve this week against J.B. Pennington (0-1, 0-0).
“I would be distraught if everything wasn’t correctable,” Ozmint said. “But everything we did incorrectly is correctable, so that’s the good news. We have to polish and execute and work on those little things. If we do those little things, then we should be successful. If we don’t, we’ll be in a dogfight. That’s just the long and short of it.”
Harrison Bright, who completed 7 of 10 passes for 183 yards and two touchdowns against White Plains in his first start at the varsity level, will look for another big game from the quarterback position. Ozmint never has asked his signal callers in the past to be stars, wanting instead a game manager. Bright fits the description.
“For his first start, I felt like he did pretty well,” Ozmint said. “He still has a lot of things he’s got to work on. He’s the type of player that’s not going to make huge plays, but he’s got a strong arm and makes good decisions. He’s going to be jealous with the football, which is what we ask of him.”
In the backfield are senior Austin Brown and freshman Thomas Ozmint, who led the team with 49 yards rushing and one touchdown last week against White Plains. Brown rushed nine times for 47 yards and another score.
Brown, who was featured by The Times before the season started as a leader for the Yellow Jackets, is a key piece for Glencoe moving forward.
“The kids respond to him and love him and know that if they block, and he can find a seam, he can go the distance from anywhere on the field,” Ozmint said. “That motivates a lot of kids to block hard. He’s a weapon, and I think if we can keep him healthy he’s going to be a weapon for us down the stretch.”
If the Yellow Jackets want to hold J.B. Pennington’s double-wing attack in check, they will rely on one of the top linebackers in Etowah County — Daniel Warren. After earning a Class 3A All-State honorable mention last year, Warren started the 2011 season off with a bang, recording 10 solo tackles and 14 total stops against White Plains.
“The sign of a good player is one that brings out the best in those around him,” Ozmint said. “He demands that of those around him. He expects more from himself and demands more from those around him.”
Several other Glencoe defenders made big plays last week, including Blake Christian. The junior recorded 10 tackles and two sacks and helped the Yellow Jackets hold White Plains to just 97 yards of offense.
A similar performance tonight against J.B. Pennington and Glencoe likely will improve to 2-0. J.B. Pennington fell to Class 1A Appalachian 26-13 last week and struggled to get anything going offensively.
Don’t expect the Tigers to pass much, as quarterback John Ganus went 1 for 3 and was sacked twice. Mason Campbell, a 5-foot-10 215-pound senior, is the workhorse on offense from the fullback position. Justin Philyaw and Drew Cole are shifty wingbacks who try to find room behind an offensive line that averages 240 pounds across.
“There’s things they do that can cause us trouble defensively and offensively, but these games are effort-driven,” Ozmint said. “If we go out and play with great effort, then a lot of those things will take care of themselves.”