Latest Team Rankings
Free Text Alerts
|ShopMobileRadio RSSRivals.com Yahoo! Sports|
|College Teams||High Schools|
June 21, 2012Columbia (SC) The 2012 football season is just around the corner and Palmetto state prep fans won't have to wait long before the season's biggest games take place. On September 28th, two of 3A-Region III's leaders will collide when the defending 2A Upper-State Champion Woodruff travels to take on the Union County Yellow Jackets.
Bottom line, this is region play. Woodruff, after a 2A title game appearance last season, moves up to 3A and into the Region III. The Wolverines will have already faced two tough opponents with Abbeville and Byrnes in back-to-back games in 1 and 2, and this match up with Union County will be the first of region play. The Wolverines spanked the Jackets in 2011 in a 66-32 blowout where starters didn't leave the game until 6 minutes remaining. Yellow Jackets will remember that and what better way at redemption than getting that win back in a region situation.
KEY POINT - WOODRUFF
Lets not dodge the obvious here; the Wolverines lost a lot of talent to graduation in several key spots. But their biggest loss was RB Shun Tribble, who was the one who made the wheels on the bus roll. They still have solid skill in key spots on offense, especially at QB (Ben Beck) and WR (Blake Bone).? Last year's win was a tribute, however, to their defense as much as their offense. They collected six sacks on Jacket QB Keiston Smith, forced multiple turnovers, including two pic-6 returns to help in their blow out effort. They are very strong in the secondary and that could be bad news for the Jackets again.
KEY POINT - UNION COUNTY
This Jacket team has been loaded with talent for a couple of years and have been developing. Now, with Steve Tanehill heading up the troops, the demand for perfection is greater and he will have this team prepared. They must limit turnovers, however, as they cannot trade touchdowns with anyone at this point. Look for the Jackets to be more productive on offense, as well as a lot more consistent. They must control the football and they must be productive in their drives (ie: score)
There is a lot of talent in this game, and I think the fans will get well over their money's worth in the form of a very good football game. The Wolverines have one of the top defensive backs in the state in Darius Jones (5-9, 165) and one of the state's top 2014 prospects in wide receiver Blake Bone (6-5, 185), who has offers from both Clemson and South Carolina. Junior quarterback Ben Beck will be taking the reigns for Coach Lane's team and is going to develop into a very good quarterback. Joining Jones in the secondary will be Kenny Drummond (5-9, 165) who was recently offered by Garnder-Webb and will probably see double duty on the offensive side of the ball filling in where Tribble left off. And if you want excitement, watch special teams phenom Syd Wedman, who returned 6 punts for touchdowns in 2011.
The Yellow Jackets return starting quarterback Keiston Smith (6-0, 200), who has generated some interest from some in state FCS schools, and wide receivers Victor Ruth? (5-10, 178) and Kaylay Jones (6-1, 175), who has generated a lot of interest from SC State and several DII schools.
I honestly believe that Union County is going to be much improved under their new coaching staff and they have the talent to win. That said, in games like this, they are still the "mystery" team and I like to go with the big play guys. Woodruff lacks experience at quarterback but he is very good and has the potential to be one of their best, and they have the most dynamic player on the field in wide receiver Blake Bone. I'm going with Woodruff because the strenght of their team will be the defensive secondary and that could neutralize the effectiveness of the new Yellow Jacket offensive concept.
South Carolina NEWS