Jacket defense a bright spot
Coming into the season, the North Augusta offense was filled with big names and expectations. While the offense has been impressive, it could be argued the defense has been even more so.
In a 45-3 Week Zero win, North Augusta held T.L. Hanna, a team known for its rushing attack, to 11 yards on 21 carries. Although they gave up 140 yards through the air, since T.L. Hanna had to go through the air to attempt a comeback, they also had an interception.
Against Midland Valley in Week One, a team with explosive players such as Daniel and Dre Carr in the backfield and Kameron Brown outside, the Jackets held the Mustangs to 189 total yards of offense. The Jackets pitched a shutout up until the fourth quarter on their way to a 43-6 win.
“With the quarterback they have (Daniel Carr), they scared us all week,” defensive coordinator Derrick Quinn said. “He’s dangerous with the football, and though we could do everything right, there was the chance he could break it. We played very vanilla and tried to keep him in the box and make him throw over the top of us. You’ve just got to do your job and everyone has their own responsibility. When everyone lines up and does their job, we are pretty good on defense.”
An argument could be made that Brown is the area’s top wide receiver. North Augusta held him to one catch for 11 yards.
“We always recognized where he was at, he’s a good player and he’s a playmaker for them,” defensive backs coach Louis Mackie said. “All we tried to do was take away the routes that he likes to run and make him uncomfortable. A good receiver is going to make a play, but we wanted to make it uncomfortable for him. The main way we did that was pressure up front.”
Head coach Dan Pippin said that Midland Valley was able to move the ball “a bit more than he would have thought.” However, the lone score by Midland Valley, as he pointed out, came on a mistimed jump that could have just as easily been another interception.
“Someone asked me how we gameplanned to stop their guys,” Pippin said. “I told them I stay in my office and let the defensive guys do their stuff. We’re going to run the 4-3, and, from there, it’s their job.”