We had a great lineup with us last night at Shane’s Rib Shack on Westover Terrace for our Football in Focus Show and you can watch the show here at the site when you click on the LIVE BROADCASTS link at the top of our home page….
Coach Rodney Brewington from Smith HS was with us and he did a super job of breaking down what the Golden Eagles are up to as they prepare to host North Cross, out of Roanoke, Virginia, tonight at Smith’s Claude Manzi Stadium….
Smith QB coach Priest Everhart was also with us and he is a former Salisbury Hornet football player and Coach Everhart played college football for Coach Neal Mitchell at Greensboro College…..Coach Everhart is very proud of what is seeing early from his senior quarterback Jeff Sims and from his backup Kalen Pratt…
Eric Ebron, the future North Carolina Tar Heel was with us and Eric has quickly become a team leader for the Smith Golden Eagles, from his tight end postion and at defensive end….Demari “DL” Boswell, who’s brother Quinton Boswell is already at UNC-Pembroke, was able to tell help us break down the Smith secondary, where he is a key starter at 5’9/170…..Boswell loves to hit and he has already accepted and made a verbal commitment to attend the Naval Academy at Annapolis, upon graduation from Smith, in the Spring of 2011….Boswell made his commitment to Midshipmen defensive coach Buddy Green, who used to coach with Dick Sheridan at N.C. State and later Green was the head coach at UT-Chattanooga……Our last guest from Smith was DiAndre Thompson, who moved to Greensboro this year from Blacksburg, South Carolina and DiAndre lines up at defensive end, on the opposite side of Eric Ebron, along the Golden Eagles’ defensive line….Thompson checks in at 200 pounds and he says he likes what he sees at Smith and he can’t wait to face the Dudley Panthers, toward the end of next month….Thompson also said he likes what he sees, from the brand of football that is played in North Carolina and that says a lot, from a kid coming up here from South Carolina….
Coach Brewington is doing a fine job of getting his kids out into the community….
Brandon Burkes, the kid who broke his neck in Dudley’s football practice earlier this month, was with us….Brandon is a very determined young man and he has plans to be back with the Dudley Panthers on the football field next season and he tells us, that you won’t just see him kicking, he says he will be back at linebacker, when he returns to the Panthers’ lineup….Brandon will also back on the diamond for the Dudley baseball team, this coming Spring….Don’t underestimate the willpower of this Panther….Brandon Burkes believes he will be back, bigger and better than ever, and how can you argue with a young man that has his level of determination….As his mom, Rochelle Burkes told us, “he is a miracle child and the dream is still alive and growing”……..
We had a solid football talk with Trey Swaim and Luke Heavner from Ragsdale High School and Coach Tommy Norwood always sends us first-class representatives from his team of Tigers….Swaim will start tonight at linebacker against Dudley and he is all business as he prepares to pop the Panthers and that is what you have to do, you have to hit them when the ball is snapped, or you will be looking up and you’ll be watching the moon and stars, moving from Lincoln Street toward Florida….Swaim, along with Robert Pompey and Trey Grimes, form the Ragsdale Tigers linebacking corp and Swaim will man the middle and be the mike man, as the Mike Linebacker…..Grimes and Pompey will fill the Sam and Will LB spots in the Tiger “D”….
Swaim carries a certain level of confident intensity about him and defensive coach Johnny Boykin has a lot to be proud of, when he sees Swaim and his other LB’s take the field…..QB Luke Heavner is a little different than Swaim and Heavner is one of the loosest ‘Cats(Ragsdale Tigers/Cats) that you will ever meet……It is very refreshing to come across a kid like Heavner….He is ready for the game and he isn’t going let this game overshadow his opportunity to enjoy the football experience, or his chance to have some fun while in high school….We(even us as adults) can learn quite a bit, from how Heavner approaches the game and life…..He is loose and as a coach, you would to have a kid like him back there leading your team….He will make others around him relax and be able to focus on their assignments…..This kid will be cool under pressure and I don’t think the pressure will ever get to him….Ragsdale lost to Dudley last year in a very important playoff game with Heavner at QB….So what, he has another crack at Dudley this year and he led his team to victory over Dudley in the regular sesaon, one year ago….Heavner gives credit to the Dudley squad and he knows they will be tough, that goes without saying….Luke said he looks forward to meeting up with Kevin Littlejohn and Mycah Gaylord, after training with those Panthers all last summer at Velocity or Parasi…….
Heavner will make his family proud and in Jamestown, you have to be proud of what this Ragsdale Tiger football program has been able to accomplish over the past several years and both Swaim and Heavner said they don’t see the cycle ceasing, or the talent pool drying up any time soon…..David Ritter,(who’s son Tyler Ritter helped lead the offensive line for the Tigers in 2007-2009), coached many of the Ragsdale kids in the Jamestown youth football programs, for many years and that is what has helped build the strong foundation of this program that is “Ragsdale Tiger Football”…
After what we saw and heard last night at Shane’s; Smith, Dudley and Ragsdale should all find success on and off the field this season…….