Red Level Tigers look for improvements heading into 2016

Published 12:05 am Friday, August 26, 2016

John Lee and the Red Level Tigers look for a bounce back in 2016.

John Lee and the Red Level Tigers look for a bounce back in 2016.

The Red Level Tigers (0-0) are looking to get 2016 off to a good start when they open up the football season tonight with a home contest against Cottonwood (0-1).

“We are going to have to play a lot better than we did last week in the preseason game at Straughn,” Red Level head coach James Wise said. “One thing we are still trying to figure out is how to win when things don’t start too well for us. Cottonwood is going to be a good team. We both come in off a loss, but theirs wasn’t nearly as bad as ours was.”

Wise said the Tigers had a good week of practice and look to make the most of the home match against Cottonwood.

“We had a good week of practice,” Wise said. “I think we have gotten a lot done. It’s been hot, but it’s been hot for everyone. I’ve been telling the kids just to let last week go. It’s done it’s over. Last week didn’t matter, but this week is where it starts to count.”

Although Red Level fell to Straughn in their preseason match, Wise said he saw more positive things than he initially thought.

“After going over the film, I don’t think we played as bad as I thought we did,” Wise said. “I’m a perfectionist, though, so when we lose I’m always going to think we played terrible. We have to start playing hard from the beginning of the game. We can’t wait until we are down a few touchdowns before we decide we want to play.”

This week against Cottonwood, Wise said that Red Level will have to stop the option,

“They are an option team,” Wise said. “They have a really good quarterback and good fullback that is a big boy. They made it to the playoffs last year so you know that they know how to win. They are young and lost a lot from last year, but so are we.  We are just going to play a simple defense. We aren’t going to make it too complicated, because we can’t do complicated.”

The key to success on offense, Wise said would be finding Cottonwood’s weak spot.

“They run the same defense that we run,” Wise said. “I will try to get them balanced and see which side that they are weakest.”

Wise said that Red Level has to do better with not hurting themselves.

“One thing we need to do is cut down on the mistakes,” Wise said. “We are turning the ball over too much, missing blocks and dropping passes. We also need to play better from the start so we can get an early lead. If we get up early, I will be able to spot rest some people.”

Red Level and Cottondale will kickoff tonight at 7 p.m., at Crystal Spring Park.