MURFREESBORO – New coach.
Oakland High and first-year coach Kevin Creasy Saturday reached the finals of their third of four 7-on-7 passing tournaments .
I guess the ole Wing-T offense must not be that bad afterall.
Oakland finished runner-up to Marshall County, falling 21-14 at Floyd Stadium in its final 7-on-7 tune-up before putting on shoulder pads Monday to begin work in helmets and shells to get acclimated to the heat per TSSAA rules.
Here are five things to take from the Patriots’ 7-on-7 success.
Creasy, who won three state titles at Trousdale County before coming to Murfreesboro to replace Thomas McDaniel, has quickly implemented his offense.
If the past two weeks are any indication, fans shouldn’t be concerned with the new offense.
Creasy has found ways to get his top athletes the ball. Oakland quarterbacks Cody Miller and Brendan Matthews have taken turns finding Oakland’s receivers for big plays over the past two weeks.
Granted, the next week fans will see a heavy dose of the run game at practice prior to practice in full pads July 27.
Matthews had moments where he looked like the clear cut favorite to win the quarterback battle at MTSU. His deep ball to Mark Pruitt against Shelbyville was a beautifully placed ball.
However, Miller had two big TD passes against New Hope, Alabama, in their quarterfinal win.
Both are competing for the starting job. Miller was a backup the past two years. Matthews was a backup at Independence a year ago.
So far, neither appears to have separated themselves despite swapping snaps at tournaments at Riverdale, Ravenwood, the Titans complex and MTSU.
Perhaps a two-quarterback system could work during the season too.
Injuries mounting up
JaCoby Stevens, Kaleb Oliver and Quintavious Boyd each didn’t play at MTSU because of injuries. All three are key components of the Patriots’ receiving corps and defensive backfield.
Others such as Lazarius Patterson and Zarius Gamble stepped up on both sides of the ball as did Pruitt.
However, is sustaining injuries in one-hand touch a bad sign? Maybe.
But several were held out for precautionary reasons. Creasy said had it been real games those injured may have been able to get on the field.
Room to improve
Don’t go ahead an crown the Patriots the Region 2-6A champs just yet because of a little passing success.
Smyrna beat the Patriots 14-7 in a pool play, but didn’t make it to the top bracket in single elimination. While the Bulldogs struggled early, quarterback John Turner rallied his team for the upset.
In the hunt
Despite some disappointments, such as falling to Marshall County in three tournaments the past two weeks, the Patriots have shown it will be a region player this season despite having a new head coach with virtually a brand-new coaching staff.
Will it be better than Riverdale and Blackman? Who knows? However, they are the top three teams to beat in the county entering the season.
Contact Tom Kreager at 615-278-5168 or email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @Kreager.
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