CCHS Coach Allan Floyd

The fifth ranked Clarke County Bulldogs will host the tenth ranked Washington County Bulldogs tonight in a region 1-3A battle with a lot of importance. Clarke County could pretty much wrap up this championship tonight with a win over Washington County . They have already defeated Sumter County (5-1; 3-1) 37-6 and Mobile Christian(2-4; 2-2) 32-0.

Washington County's only stumble was against Sumter County 46-21. They have taken care of Mobile Christian 27-7, Choctaw County 34-0 and Calhoun 49-13.

Clarke County has waltzed through the rest of their region with wins over Calhoun 55-0 and Choctaw County 41-0. The only real contests for them were two trips against 4A competition. An opening game thrashing to a pretty good T.R. Miller squad 36-7 served notice to their future opponents that these "dawgs" have some teeth.

The fifth week of the season the Bulldogs ventured into the 4A ranks, and this time it proved to be a real tussle against Jackson winning in overtime 22-21.

After this week both teams play Central, Hayneville and Francis Marion to complete region play.

Should Clarke County win and lose one of those games they would still be the top seed in region due wins over both Sumter County and Washington County.

Should Washington County win this game and win out and Sumter County and Clarke County did the same we would have one of those crazy ties where everyone has a loss from a different team so who goes first? We might need to get one of the football players who is doing well in math to help us with the tiebreaker steps in the AHSAA rules.

One more scenario, if Washington County wins the last three games and Sumter County loses one of their three match-ups Washington County would be champion of the region off the strength of the win over Clarke County.

Okay, let's take a breath because Clarke County is going to keep us from doing any math. I was told there would be no math.

Coach Allan Floyd: "Our out-of-region victories against T.R. Miller and Jackson, those were big wins for us. Obviously, not losing a game to this point has been big, but we have another big game this week as well."

"The seniors have played really big and provided lots of leadership. The team has lots of character. They play hard every week, and that's going to help you regardless. Not only that, but they practice hard. This is just all standard rhetoric, but in theory they practice hard, and they play hard. We have more leadership than we've had from any point in the past, and that's why we are where we are."

"Senior Kenneth Kimbrough (6-0, 226) was a little nicked up last week, but they tell me he will be better this week and then better the next week, almost 100 percent. Even if he doesn't have a major contribution this week against Washington County he will certainly be back at top speed next week."

Rebecca Johnston: Have you seen a full house up front to try to stop him most weeks?

AF: "Absolutely. People put a lot in the box to try to slow him down, but up to this point I guess because our other backs (Bubba Frazier and Tim Barnett) are capable as well that it has been very difficult to strategically place nine or 10 in there where they can predicate the defense on just stopping him."

"There are other folks we've got them to worry about. Our quarterback (Tyler Walker) this year and our split end. We have two other running backs. It makes it tough on people."

RJ: With backs doing such good jobs sometimes the workhorses get overlooked. What about your offensive line?

AF: Well, yes they have been talked about several times before in the media. It's week-to-week. Some weeks they all play well. They are kind of a blue collar bunch, and they do a real good job up front. I don't think we've been sacked but twice all year."

RJ: Is there anyone in particular who is a leader of that group?

AF: Otis Jackson guard 6-3, 245 and Mark Lambert tackle (5-10, 205) Jr."

RJ: Would you call your line a physical group or a thinking group who make adjustments well?

AF: Actually, a little bit of both really. We've been smarter and more physical this year. All of them have had some starts over the last couple of years, so that's helped. They have played quiet a bit. A little bit of both, football sense and a willingness to hit as well."

RJ: You have three shutouts and had two other games with less than seven points.

AF: "We have played real good on that side of the ball as well. We gave up one of those touchdowns in overtime, but other than that I think we were giving up five points game. They learned a new base defense last year and did not vary from it and sticking to it and then adding to it this year."

RJ: The defense you run?

AF: "We run a split six. An unusual defense."

RJ: Yes, we don't hear that very much. We're surprised if a coach tells us they don't run the spread offense.

AF: "That's right." (laughing)

RJ: Let's talk about the Jackson overtime win. We don't imagine coaches really want to get in a situation where you need to win late in a game or overtime. Do you think that kind of game builds character in a defense?

AF: "Sure it does. Sure it does. It showed them that they could succeed late in the game. We had not trailed in that game (until then), and they had to come from a deficit for the first time this year."

RJ: What will you have to stop to be successful over Washington County this week?

AF: "A great big fullback I believe his name is Jarvis Abston. They do a good job. They play good defense. They are 5-1, obviously they are doing something right. I think he is there go-to-guy."

RJ: Tell us about your special teams. We notice you go for two a lot.

AF: "From very bad to much better. We went for two a lot early because we couldn't make the kick. We changed our quarterback and moved our quarterback to holder, and Mark Lambert has made nine extra points in a row."

"Kick-offs have been deep enough all year. That's been fine, and Tim Barnett has been doing a good job punting. I would say they are much improved over the last couple of years."

RJ: Nice to win the field position battle with the kicking game isn't it?

AF: "Yes it is. Anywhere inside the 10 is a big help." source for Alabama high school football.

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