Inside the Game: Byrnes

COLUMBIA --- Duncan (S.C.) Byrnes and Roebuck (S.C.) Dorman proved the old football adage that it's difficult to defeat a team twice in one season. The past two years, the rivals have met twice and split the outcomes.

Their most recent meeting occurred Saturday with Dorman coming away with a 28-17 victory in the SCHSL Class AAAA Division I Title game. That win comes six weeks after Byrnes dealt Dorman its only loss of the season – a 17-10 nail-bitter.


Byrnes' nationally recognized offense, which was developed by former head coach and current offensive coordinator Bobby Bentley, typically lines up in a three-wide receiver set with just one running back in the backfield, Marcus Lattimore. Byrnes will utilize both single back and shotgun formations.

Jazz King is one of Byrnes' three main receivers. On Saturday, King seemed to be used mostly as a deep threat.

In Byrnes' offense, Lattimore is asked to be a complete ‘back. In addition to handling the entire running workload – which includes running out of the single back, shotgun and wildcat – he will pass bock and run routes. Lattimore will typically run routes from out of the backfield, but he will line up at receiver in an empty set (shotgun with no running back) formation.

Byrnes' base defense is a 4-3 scheme with Corey Miller and Brandon Willis lining up at the end positions. Willis is on the strong side, while Miller is on the weak.

Big Plays

* Lattimore prevented a third first quarter three-and-out with a 38-yard reception on a third-and-22. Six plays later, Byrnes put its first points on the board with a 46-yard field goal.

On the play, Lattimore lined up in the slot in a five-wide empty set. He ran a deep out and the nearest defender fell.

* On Byrnes' next offensive drive – its first of the second quarter – King caught the only pass thrown his direction all game. The reception, which was a 28-yard gain, moved Byrnes into the red zone for the first time. The pass to King was less than ideal, but he adjusted and nearly dove to make the reception.

"I just saw the pass and knew I had to make the play," King said.

The drive ended in the end zone with a one-yard Lattimore touchdown run.

* Midway through the third quarter facing a fourth-and-12 from Byrnes' 30-yard line, Dorman decided to go for the first down, instead of punting or attempting a long field goal.

Johnny Foster, Dorman's quarterback, faked a strong-side toss and rolled to his left. Willis didn't bite on the fake, quickly broke his block, and pursued Foster. Foster spun out of a Miller tackle-attempt only to see Willis running straight at him. With a big bear hug, Willis brought Foster down to pick up his second sack of the night and end Dorman's drive.


Jazz King
Receiving: 1 catch for 28 yards
Receiving Breakdown: 28

Rushing: 32 carries for 151 yards and two touchdowns
Receiving: 5 catches for 76 yards
Rushing Breakdown: 3, 3, 7, 7, 5, 4, 7, 3, 5, 2, 1t, 4, 5, 10, 3, 6, 1, 1, 1, 3, 18, 3, 8, 7, 0, 4, 5, 4, 5, 1t, 8, 7,
Receiving Breakdown: -2, 38, 9, 26, 5

Brandon Willis
Tackles: 7 (6 solo)
Sacks: 2 for 11 yards

Corey Miller
Tackles: 2 (2 solo)


King is a hard worker who does everything that's asked of him. He is an excellent blocker on screens, runs, and downfield. He engages his opponent and drives him away from the play.

King has reliable hands and will adjust to poorly thrown passes.

Lattimore is a complete ‘back who can run between the tackles, run outside, block, and be used as a receiver. Lattimore is a patient runner that will scope out the best hole, cut, and hit that hole. He has the power to run over defenders and the agility to juke defenders. He always keeps his legs moving upon contact and falls forward when going down – sometimes even leaping forward to gain a few extra yards.

When Lattimore runs a route, you could easily confuse him for a receiver. He's a reliable receiver who is dangerous after the reception.

The main attraction to both Miller and Willis is just how athletic and fast they are for their size. The main difference in the two is that Miller is slightly more fluid and has finesse, whereas Willis is more powerful and has a bigger frame – which explains why some project Willis to grow into a defensive tackle.

Against the run or pass, Miller loves to use the swat move to get by his offensive lineman. He's very agile and has very active hands. The "swat and swim" is his go-to pass rush move, but he'll mix in a spin move every once in a while. Miller is quick off the snap and will deliver a nice initial pop.

Miller quickly shed blocks and locates the ball carrier. He doesn't consistently get ideal leverage on tackles, but once he locks onto the ball carrier, Miller uses his weight and momentum to bring the ball carrier down.

Willis gets great leverage against offensive linemen and will uses his best asset - his power - to bull rush his opponent. Against the run, Willis will ride a block out, but shed it to make the tackle as the ball carrier reaches him. While pass rushing, Willis isn't all that creative but uses his strong hands and long arms to keep the offensive lineman off his body and push him into the pocket. He does a good job of keeping blockers off his feet when in pursuit.


Everyone - from members of the media to people close to Byrnes High School - say Lattimore will end up at South Carolina.. One person went as far as to say that Lattimore is just "playing the recruiting game."

Miller, who was originally scheduled to officially visit UNC the same weekend Willis made his trip, had tentatively rescheduled his UNC official visit for this coming weekend, according to Inside Carolina's sources. However, Miller told Inside Carolina after the game that he would not be visiting UNC or any other school.

Other Standouts

Between these two teams, there was a lot of talent on the field.

Although just a junior, Charone Peake is on the same level as Byrnes' big three. He seems to catch everything thrown his direction and makes it appear effortless. The 6-foot-3, 170-pounder is Dorman's go-to receiver and caught a game-high five passes for 88 yards, including a 37-yard touchdown.

South Carolina pledge Nick Jones was one of the most explosive players with the ball in his hands. The 5-foot-9, 170-pound receiver turned a lot of short passes into major gains. He ended the game with four catches for 57 yards (14.25-yard average).

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