Photos by DeMill DixonQuarterback Dequan Moore (14, background) releases a pass in the spring jamboree with his offensive linemen providing protection.
Lataryl Dougherty (23) carries for the Indians versus Holly Springs in a recent spring match-up.
Terrance Davis (2) of Byhalia makes a tackle versus Holly High.
Photos by DeMill DixonThe Byhalia Indians take the field for the recent spring football jamboree at Sam Coopwood Park in Holly Springs.
Coach John Danley closely watches his Indians during the spring jamboree.
Danley rebuilds Byhalia football
Coach John Danley said his Byhalia Indians have to get back to playing “big boy football.”
And he saw a glimpse of that in the recent spring jamboree held in Holly Springs.
“We were definitely more aggressive, and that’s what we have to do,” he said. “They’ve been in the weight room and gotten stronger. They’ve been working their tails off. They’re buying into what we’re selling.”
The Indians went 3-7 overall and 0-5 in Region 1-4A last season. Danley took over as head coach in July of last year, just prior to the start of pre-season practice.
That was a young team. He lost just nine seniors to graduation and has several starters returning on both sides of the football for 2018.
“We will be a year older, but we will still be a young team,” Danley said. “But the next few years, things should start paying off for us.
“The spring has given a lot of guys the opportunity to get better and given me the opportunity to teach.”
He was previously the head coach in 2012 and 2013, and the Indians made the playoffs in both those seasons.
“I want to build the type of program I am accustomed to having,” Danley said.
Dequan Moore, a sophomore, will likely get the call at quarterback.
“He’s putting in the work,” Danley said, “and that’s going to pay off big for us. He’s intelligent – a born leader.”
He said the offense looked good in the jamboree and he was particularly pleased with only one penalty.
“We played everybody,” he said. “A lot of young guys had the chance to get on the field.”
And defensively, Danley liked the aggressiveness.
“We’re expecting big things on that side of the football,” he said.
This summer the Indians will continue their work in the weight room, plus play some seven-on-seven versus teams from DeSoto County.
“We want to play up (against the larger schools) and see how we match up against their talent,” Danley said. “This will help our quarterbacks and receivers a lot.
“It’s all about getting ready for August.”
Byhalia will host cross-county rival Holly Springs Friday night, Aug. 17, to kick off the new season.
Other non-district foes are Coahoma County, New Site, Independence, Caledonia and Coldwater.
District opponents are Corinth, New Albany, Senatobia, Ripley and Tishomingo County.