Loudon Redskins

The tradition rich Loudon Redskins football program suffered through a miserable 3-7 record in 2002 under first year Head Coach Jeff Harig. Since winning three State Championships in 1969, ‘74 and '75, Loudon has won a ton of games and made plenty of postseason appearances but not attained those lofty heights yearned for by their loyal fan base.

Harig and the 2003 edition of this Redskin reservation are determined to restore Loudon Football to former winning ways. "After last season, the Redskins are committed to getting back to the playoffs," said Coach Harig. "This will be a senior dominated team. If we can find answers at quarterback and in the secondary, we will be successful."

Seven starters return to stock Loudon's fifty defensive front that needs to improve in order to stop tough opponents in rugged Region 2-3A. "We should be strong along our defensive interior and be good against the run," said Coach Harig.

Seniors dominate the starting defensive line. Tyler Foshee (5'9" 185), Matt Brown (6'0" 205) and Lee Sarten (6'2" 265) will be counted upon to stuff the run game and pressure the quarterback. Junior Kyle Tallent (6'2" 215) will get a strong look along the D-line along with senior Tim Guider (6'2" 180). Sophomore John Paul Hackney (6'1" 185) will find playing time as well.

The linebackers are solid. Senior stalwart Patrick Johnson (6'1" 195) recorded 61 tackles, two for losses and ripped into four QB sacks a year ago. Johnson will be joined inside by sophomore hitman Matthew Packett (5'10" 285). Seniors Chris Hutchins (5'10" 175) and Shane Thompson (6'3" 195) will team up and form Loudon's tandem at outside linebacker. Thompson had 44 tackles and four sacks last season.

The defensive secondary needs to step up and smother opposing receivers as the Redskins were burned on third down and in the passing game a year ago. Seniors Jake Brantley (5'11" 185), Chase Randolph (6'0" 170) and Kevin Kirkland (5'8" 150) will be joined by junior Josh McQueen (5'10" 165) in the defensive backfield.

Loudon's Wing-T offensive attack relies on a strong running game to control the clock and keep high flying Region foes offense's off the field. The top returning runner is wingback Johnson, who rushed 65 times for 602 yards and caught 5 passes for another 53 yards a year ago. Brantley will also be busy as he carried 94 times for 452 yards while Hutchins got 28 carries for 137 yards at fullback in 2002. Cory Fritts (5'8" 150) and fellow sophomore Brandon Dixon (5'11" 185) hope to get in on the fun and earn carries. Junior Jesse Henry (5'11" 175) will get playing time either at RB or receiver.

When the Redskins opt to go to the air, sophomore quarterback Cody Fritts (5'8" 145) is ready for Friday night prime time. Thompson caught three passes for 34 yards at tight end in 2002. Randolph, Brantley and Johnson hope to get more opportunities to catch the football on passing downs.

Loudon's offensive line has potential for bigtime improvement this season. The center should be senior Stan Helton (6'1" 198). The guards should be Brown and fellow senior C.J. Sharpe (6'1" 195) while the tackles should be seniors Josh Conner (6'0" 250) and Lee Sarten (6'2" 265).

While the Loudon Redskins struggled mightily a year ago, much to the dismay of many fans of this particular tribe, the 2003 edition is loaded with experienced seniors bent on returning Loudon to its "rightful" place in the order of high school football. The schedule is loaded with powers such as rugged Anderson County and Kingston, high flying Austin-East and Fulton, and talented Sweetwater plus the annual Battle of the Bridge against county arch rival Lenoir City. Coach Harig and his nasty band of Redskins have applied the war paint and are ready to go to war!

TNPrepSports.com Prediction- 6-4

Playoff Contender-Yes

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