CORBIN — Bell County at Corbin
Oct. 18Where: Campbell Field
Date: Friday, Oct. 12, 7:30 p.m.
Team Records: Bell Co. 6-1, Corbin 3-4
The inside scoop: If old school, smash-mouth football is what you crave this week, Corbin’s Campbell Field is without a doubt the place to be Friday.
The Corbin Redhounds will host Bell County this week in what some football fans see as one of the best rivalry games in southeast Kentucky. The fact that the game has district implications on the line makes the game all the more important for both teams.
“I’m sure this is just as much a big pride thing for them as it is for us, so it’s big both ways,” Corbin coach Steve Jewell said. “We want to get on the winning track against a good team, but going against Bell County makes it more special for the kids.
“We feel like we squandered some scoring opportunities against Wayne County in a district contest that was another big ball game,” he added. “This is just a chance for the kids to get to feeling positive about themselves and we feel like a win could be a springboard toward the playoffs.”
While the Redhounds are 3-4 (1-1 in district play) and on the verge of evening their record on the season, Bell County comes in with a 6-1 (2-0) mark with their only loss coming at the hands of Lexington Catholic in the season opener.
The Bobcats have averaged 32 points per game on the season, twice this season putting up 50 points against Casey County and Middlesboro. Last week, Wayne Mills’ squad held what was thought to be a tough Clay County team scoreless in a 39-0 victory.
Corbin is coming off a 64-6 pounding of McCreary Central last week in a game that was played on a Thursday to help both schools get a jump-start on Fall Break. Despite the big win, Jewell said his team wasn’t about to get over confident due to the high point total.
“We were able to score a lot of points, but it was business as usual,” Jewell said. “Bell County is a much better team.”
As for what he expects out of the Bobcats when it comes to a game plan, Jewell said this year’s team is a typical Bell County team in the fact that not a lot has changed with what they will do on the football field.
“Bell County is pretty vanilla in what they’ll try to do, but they do it well,” Jewell said. “They basically line up and say ‘here we are, here’s what we’re going to do, can you stop us’.”Oct. 18Whit. Co. at Harlan Co.Oct. 18Where: Davis Memorial Stadium
Date: Friday, Oct. 12, 7:30 p.m.
Team Records: Both teams are 5-2
The inside scoop: The Whitley County Colonels (5-2, 1-0) are one of the hottest teams in the Tri-County, riding a four-game win streak after last week’s 47-28 district win over Perry County Central.
The Colonels will take that streak on the road this week against a team that is a mirror image of them on paper in the Harlan County Black Bears (5-2, 1-0), but Colonels’ coach Jim Black is quick to point out that that comparison on paper can be deceiving.
“That’s true, but when you look at them on film it’s not a mirror with how physical they are,” Black said. “We’ve got to try and match them when it comes to physicality they bring to the game.”
The two teams are close in comparison when it comes to pints scored. Harlan County has averaged 37 points per game, while Whitley County has scored 29 ppg this season. Defensivily, the Black Bears have only allowed 17 ppg, while the Colonels are a shade under that number at 16 ppg.
The two teams are similar in the fact they like to run the football and they both do it well.
Harlan County averages 327 yards on the ground, while the Colonels have tallied 308 yards per game rushing. The difference may be the fact that the bulk of the Black Bears numbers have come from senior running back Jake Middleton, who has put up impressive numbers all season.
Middleton has amassed 1,350 yards and 20 touchdowns on 163 carries this season. He comes in at 193 yards per game. The Black Bears do have two more backs in Austin Maggard and Cole Wilson, who have racked up 269 and 347 yards on the year, respectively.
Black said even though Middleton gets the bulk of the carries, he knows his team will not be able to slack off when the other two get in the game.
“They have several guys that will go in and give the Middleton kid a break and they can hurt you as well,” Black said. “Against a team like this, you can’t afford to take any plays off at all because that’s when you get in trouble.
“Our kids have done a good job of not letting up on defense and they’ll have to do even better this week,” he added. Oct. 18
K. Central at RockcastleOct. 18Where: Rocket Stadium
Date: Friday, Oct. 12, 7:30 p.m.
Team Records: K. Central 7-0, Rock 2-5
The inside scoop: The Knox Central Panthers have had the best season in the school’s history, totaling a 7-0 record and ranking 5th in the state in Class 4A. Despite their success this season, the Panthers know they cannot overlook this week’s opponent in the Rockcastle Rockets.
The Rockets have a rich tradition of being one of the most physical teams in the mountains and Knox Central Coach Scott Russell knows his team must play tough, if they want to continue their win streak.
“Rockcastle is one of those teams that is always good and can always beat you. We’ve had some wars with them in the past,” said Russell. “They are a much better team than their record shows, they’ve just hurt themselves here and there in some of their games.
“They are going to be physical and can sneak up on you. Our kids know we can’t overlook them,” he added.
With Rockcastle’s poor record this season (2-5) it would be easy for the Panthers to overlook this game, especially with district favorite Russell County awaiting them on October 19th. To ensure his players are focused, Russell said they must take a look at themselves on film and see in what areas they can improve.
“We have to show a lot of film on ourselves, and see how we make mistakes,” Russell said. “We have let them know that they aren’t as good as everyone tells them.
“Our biggest thing right now is playing a full four quarters,” he added. “We feel like we still have put a complete football game together, and that is what we are looking for.”
In last year’s district showdown between Knox Central and Rockcastle, the Panthers entered the game as somewhat of the underdog, but prevailed 40-14. Despite the big win, Knox Central finished tied in the district and ended up with the third seed, which still leaves a bad taste in the mouths of these players and coaches.
“Going back to last year, our goal for this season is to win the district championship,” Russell said. “It’s what we talk about, and it’s what our players have on their minds.
“We don’t want to look ahead to Russell County or anyone else,” he added. “We are looking at Rockcastle as the next step to the district championship. We’re looking at them like they are in our way, and we want to take care of business.”Oct. 18
W'burg at Berea Oct. 18