Rumble on the border

Published 12:01 am Friday, August 17, 2012

Florala running back Desmond Smiley runs through a drill at practice Thursday afternoon. | Andrew Garner/Star-News

It’s going to be border wars revisited as Florala will play Rocky Bayou, Fla., tomorrow afternoon for its annual jamboree football game.

The Wildcats have been bruising it out on the practice field for the last two weeks and each player is ready for the game, FHS head football coach Justin Jones said.

“We just feel like it’s a good time for us,” Jones said. “Are they excited? Anytime you get to strap on against somebody else you get to beat on or compete against (it’s great), (but) if you can’t get excited about that, then you’re in the wrong business.

“Our kids are excited about the opportunity,” he said.

Jones said the focus of the game will be on “situational” plays, especially on special teams.

“We just want to get back in a game-mode situation where you’ve got live special teams and that kind of deal,” he said. “You can work on it at practice, but you’ve got to go out there and do it (on the field) and actually get better at it.”

The junior high squad will hit the field first and then the varsity squad will play the rest of the game.

Not only the players are eager to get out there and get back to business, so are the coaches, Jones said.

“Anytime that we get a chance to compete, especially in this situation, this isn’t somebody you get to see everyday,” Jones said. “Not only are we playing a different school, but it’s kind of like an Alabama-Florida deal.

“We get to represent our state against a school that gets to represent their state,” he said.

Jones said there will be two different styles of play on the field tomorrow, which will make the game a good one to watch.

“Of the small schools that are in the southern Panhandle area, we get to see who gets the upper hand,” he said. “I feel like it will be two different types of ball for us. Rocky Bayou is more a spread team, whereas we are option and go down hill.

“You’ll get two different styles and see which will be the best in the end,” he said. “It’s exciting for us as coaches. They run a class act down there. We’re in the process of running a class act here so I think it’ll be fun for all of us.”

Game time is set for 4 p.m. at Rocky Bayou.