Thursday, August 6, 2009
Patriots install no-huddle offense
By BARRY BURLESON
Coach Keith Wicker used the word “fun” several times when talking about his Marshall Academy football Patriots.
Much of that excitement can be attributed to a new no-huddle offense installed in the spring.
“The kids like it,” said Wicker, talking to the Holly Springs Rotary Club last week. “It’s fun, and when it’s fun, you always get a better response.”
Wicker enters his third season as head coach at MA. The Patriots were state Class AA runners-up in 2007 and lost in the first round of the playoffs in 2008.
“This year’s team is unique; it’s a fun team,” he said.
He said he has an abundance of skill-position players (backs and receivers) but fewer linemen.
“I can’t ask this group to be a power football team,” Wicker said, “because of our lack of size on the line.”
Thus he came up with the new offensive strategy.
“No matter the offense, you still have to block,” he said.
“But this no-huddle approach will allow you to be the aggressor and play fast. On offense, you want to be in control of the defense.”
Wicker said he will also be changing up the team’s defensive approach due to the team’s speed and size.
Marshall will host Tunica Academy Friday, Aug. 7, in a scrimmage contest, starting at 6 p.m.
Thursday, Aug. 13, the Patriots will host a jamboree. The schedule follows – 6 p.m., Indianola vs. Rossville, Tenn.; 6:30 p.m., North Delta vs. Kirk; 7 p.m., Indianola vs. Marshall; 7:30 p.m., North Delta vs. Rossville; 8 p.m. Marshall vs. Kirk.
The regular season kicks off Friday night, Aug. 21, when MA travels to Rossville.
He expects about 27 varsity Patriots when the season kicks off.
“I think we’re going to jell,” Wicker said. “I will be surprised if we don’t.”
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