High School Notebook: Two Big Games Highlight Week 3

There are 17 total games (15 MHSAA, 2 MAIS) this week that features undefeated teams going head to head.

But none of them are bigger than these two: No. 2 Clinton at No. 1 Brandon and No. 4 West Point at No. 3 Starkville.

For the Clinton-Brandon game it’ll be one of the state’s potent offenses against one the state’s dominating defenses.

The Arrows (2-0) is led by the state’s top prospect in Cam Akers and company. Akers has tossed for 562 yards with three touchdowns and has rushed for 204 yards with three touchdowns. Running back and Southern Miss commit Darius Maberry is a big play threat at any time. Maberry has three rushing touchdowns and two receiving touchdowns.

“I don’t know if anybody can stop them, they are so explosive,” said Brandon coach Tyler Peterson “Try to keep Cam contained as much as possible and that is hard to do.”

Iowa State commit Kam’Ron White is another big play threat for Clinton. White has one receiving touchdown and defensively he has one interception.

For Brandon (2-0), it’s all about the running game and defense. Vincent Butler has rushed for 225 yards with three touchdowns to lead the running game that also has Corey Proctor and Dee Newsome.

Quarterback Brady Anderson has tossed for 249 yards with three touchdowns in the first two games.

“Seem liked we couldn’t anybody on the same page, but in the second half we started making plays,” Peterson said. “Vincent Butler is so explosive and all he needs is a crease and he’s gone. Offensive line has got control the line of scrimmage early. We need to have long sustained drives to keep that offense off the field.”

Defensively, the Bulldogs have play makers at nearly every position but it is more potent in the secondary led by Schdarren Archie and Rodney Hawkins, who both had interceptions return for touchdowns last week against Madison Central.

Brandon has owned Clinton the last few years. The Bulldogs have a six-game winning streak against the Arrows. Clinton last defeated Brandon in 2009 in the season opener.

“Everyone is expecting Clinton to win this one. After the Madison Central game one of the seniors said I’ve never lost to Clinton,” Peterson added. “It is a good mind set to have. We’ve had some battles with them and expecting another one this Friday.”

Jackets, Green Wave clash in Golden Triangle Showdown

As for Starkville and West Point it is the 94th overall meeting and it will be a battle of running games and defense.

So if you are a fan of smash mouth and grind out games this one is for you.

Last week in its season opening win over Louisville, West Point rushed for a total of 196 yards and three touchdowns. The three-headed monsters at running back Chris Calvert, Marcus Murphy and Andre Lane all had rushing touchdowns for the Green Wave (1-0).

Defensively, West Point is led by linebacker Keontae Hampton and defensive lineman C.J. Melton, who each had two sacks a piece last week.

Starkville (2-0) has found its quarterback in sophomore Malik Brown and has its own heavy rushing attack that is averaging 169.5 yards a game.  A long with Lawrence, the Yellowjackets have Andres Swanigan, Rodrigues Clark and K.J. Lawrence to run the ball.

Defense is Starkville’s bread and butter. Linebacker and Ole Miss commit Willie Gay has recorded 14 tackles in the first two games. Defensive lineman Nick Jordan and Zach Edwards each have recorded two sacks.

St. Martin looks to make 6A playoff push

Not many teams can say they finished a season 9-3 and not make the playoffs.

Well, St. Martin was one of those teams in 2015.

But behind a potent offense the Yellow Jackets are looking to make a run at the Class 6A playoffs this season.

“We just trying to finish each game that is what we are trying to preach to them right now. Offensively we get it done, but last year we didn’t do very good job of finishing games,” said St. Martin coach Eddie Wayne Whitehead. “Right now we got 12 sophomores starting total and it has been a learning curve for them. We’re trying to figure things out defensively because we’ve had trouble getting off the field.”

Sophomore sensation Donte Starks leads the defense for the Yellow Jackets.

Leading the way for that offense is senior quarterback Wayne Overman III, who holds offers from Air Force, Army, Navy and The Citadel.

In the first two games of the season quarterback Wayne Overman III has tossed for 524 yards with five touchdowns and as also rushed for 143 yards with three touchdowns, all three of those scores came in the Week 2 win at MRA.

“We’re hungry to go all the way this year,” Overman III said. “Nobody can stop us but ourselves and so this year we’re working on making the playoffs and go further than the first round.”

Three-star wide receiver Kalem Reddix, who holds offers from UL-Lafayette, Tulane, Middle Tennessee, Southern Miss among others, has three receiving touchdowns.

St. Martin (2-0) travels to Picayune (1-0) on Friday.

Hattiesburg’s offense is powerful

Through the first two weeks of the season there has been no offense that has been more explosive than Hattiesburg.

No matter the down and distance Tony Vance has a ton of confidence in is offense this year.

“I’ve been a defensive guy my whole coaching career,” he said. “This year our offense is very potent with the weapons we’ve got. We have the motto Quick 6 and so far so good.”

Quarterback and Jackson State commit Julian Conner, wide receiver and Tennessee commit Jordan Murphy and promising junior running back Fabian Franklin lead the offense.

“Regardless of the situation we’re in the coaches believe in the offense,”  Murphy said. “We got a ton of weapons on offense it is just really hard to stop us.”

The Tigers (1-1) host Collins (0-2) on Friday.

Kemper County’s bounce back week

Kemper County, the No. 2 ranked team in the Little 10, had a bounce back week offensively in a 48-20 win over Quitman.

In the season opener against Columbus the Wildcats only managed 273 yards of offense. Last week Kemper County quarterback completed 14 of 18 passes for 341 yards with six touchdowns.

Wide receiver D.J. Clayton caught 10 passes for 326 yards with five touchdowns.

The Wildcats (1-1) travel to Louisville (0-2) on Friday.

MHSAA vs. MAIS

After MAIS schools went 5-1 in the opening week of the high school football season, MHSAA schools went 4-3 in Week 2. A couple of the big wins were St. Martin defeated MRA 51-28 on the road and Madison St. Joe defeated Cathedral 44-20 on the road.

There are six matchups between MHSAA and MAIS schools in Week 3.