Colbert County vs. Hokes Bluff

After both teams shut out their opponents in Week 1 of the playoffs, Colbert County (10-1) and Hokes Bluff (9-2) will meet Friday night in a battle for an appearance in Round 3 of the playoffs.




While the Colbert County Indians are the favorite — and the home team — in the game, Hokes Bluff plans to arrive at Leighton and do what they do best.

"We want to run the ball and control the game with our offense and hopefully do a good job with our kicking game," said Hokes Bluff head coach Michael Robertson.

With the Indians' ability to make big plays on offense, Hokes Bluff also plans to rely on their special teams to counteract some of the mismatches that Colbert County provides for them.

Last week against Sumiton Christian, the Eagles were able to block a punt early in the game, off of which they were able to get an easy score. Their second touchdown of the night was set up after a strong punt return as they went on to defeat Sumiton 34-0 while Colbert County topped Geraldine 49-0.

"Colbert County has outstanding speed in their return game, and we want to make sure they don't hurt us there. We also have to make sure we don't give up big plays. They score on 50-, 60- or 70-yard runs, so very seldom have they taken the ball and have to drive it with a number of plays," said Robertson.

While Robertson is concerned about the Indians' big plays, his primary concern with Colbert County's game is their speed. Fortunately, Robertson feels they are prepared for that after facing teams faster than they in the regular season.

"The teams in our region are really fast, so hopefully it'll help that we've seen that before. But we've just got to control their speed both offensively and defensively," said Robertson.

"They create turnovers off their defensive speed, and offensively they break big plays on pretty much every team they've played."

While the Indians, according to Robertson, play at a different level than Sumiton Christian, the Eagles are prepared to face what lies ahead of them.

"I think we're confident," said Robertson. "These guys have been through the wars this fall, and they understand that every week is a new week. Anytime you get into the playoffs, everybody is a good team or they wouldn't be here."

"We're confident that we're going to go out and play a really good game. We may not win, but we want to do the best we can."

Against a team with a slightly better record and few weaknesses, the Eagles know they are the underdogs, but their confidence and preparation has left them ready to take on whatever comes their way Friday night.

"They're an outstanding team. You can just look at their record and see that. They've got outstanding speed, good size and they're well-coached," Robertson said.

"Everything you look for in a good team, they've got it. We're definitely going to have our hands full."

And Robertson plans to stick by what he tells his guys against every strong opponent: "Play as hard as you can play, and when the game's over, we'll look up and see who won."

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