Tigers’ o-line built for success

Published 12:45 am Wednesday, October 22, 2008

There is no “I” in line when it comes to the Straughn Tigers’ offensive line.

No. 7 Straughn (7-1, 5-1 in Class 3A, Region 1) has considerable success since the beginning of the year, winning their first seven games.

Last week, the Tigers couldn’t pull it out against No. 1 T.R. Miller, but head coach Trent Taylor said the offensive line overall looked solid.

“Even the other night we had some miscues early on and we got behind,” Taylor said. “Our offensive line was consistent pretty much all night long. Finally, once we got things rolling, they did a great job.”

Straughn’s offensive line consists of returning starters Chase Parker (junior) and Garrett Powell (senior). The other three are seniors Jayme Dubose, Jerrod James and sophomore Michael Pittman.

This week marks the ninth week in the regular football season and to date, Straughn has not elected captains, according to Taylor.

“We’ve tried to downplay as much of the individual stuff as we possibly can,” he said. “You’ve got to understand, Richard Robertson was my junior high coach and I learned a lot of stuff from him. He never liked any of that individual stuff.”

Taylor added that what has helped the offensive line continue to be so successful is their experience.

“I think obviously having three seniors up there has helped tremendously,” Taylor said “ They’re a really unique group. We pick at them all the time. We talk about how their guards did better than the tackles or the tackles did better than the guards and they kind of pick on each other about that, too.”

Taylor said that each lineman has a different personality trait, which is another reason why they do so well.

“You’ve got to get to know the personality of Chase Parker, the center,” he said. “He’s the middle man, and he says he gets caught in the middle. Michael is the quiet one of the bunch, I don’t know if that’s because of youth or because of personality. He doesn’t have a whole lot to say. He just kind goes out and does his job.

“Chase would probably be the clown of the five,” Taylor said. “He’s going to make sure none of the coaches know that or he thinks he’s fooling us. Jerrod and Jayme are like a married couple. They’re always nyah-nyahing each other about something. Jerrod’ll get real aggravated and hit Jayme and he’ll be fussing of course and Jayme will fuss back. They’re like two brothers. As for Garrett, he’s the skinny one. He has the built of a receiver.”

The one other thing that Taylor said he finds unique about these players when spring training was over, they were in entirely different positions than they are in now.

“We didn’t come out of the spring with those five at those positions,” he said. “They have really jelled together. They as a group have had as much to do with our success as a football team as any one group.”