Leaders for the Tigers look forward to 2015 season

The Adairsville Tigers football team has been to the state playoffs each of the past four years.

Coach Eric Bishop’s squad was 10-2 last season and compiled a 7-4 mark the year before. With the momentum of four consecutive playoff seasons in hand, the Adairsville head coach is as excited as ever about his 2015 squad.

“We actually bring back more starters this year than last and these guys have worked very hard,” the coach remarked.

Four of those leaders recently shared comments about their summer workouts and the upcoming season with Bartow Sports Zone.

Junior offensive lineman, Jeb Simerly (6-2, 310) and senior receiver Marquel Lane (5-7, 150) represented the Tigers’ offense. “We’ve worked hard,” said Simerly. “We’re going to make some people notice. We’ve gotten better on the field and in the weight room.” added the lineman. Lane agreed, “We’re ready to show folks what we can do. We’ve spent so much time together and pushed each other. We’ve had a good summer.”

Football summers are not always fun, however. There are sacrifices.

“Getting up early is always tough,” noted Lane. “It’s summer, so you want to stay up or sleep in, but you have football and we know the work will be worth it.”

The Tigers will open the 2015 season with a new signal caller. “We lost a 3-year starting quarterback in Marcus Childers,” noted head coach Bishop, “those are obviously some big shoes to fill. But we have Torrey Hale (5-9, 190, Sr.) and Roger Redd (Jr.) competing and working very hard to fill the quarterback position.” Hale will be a two-way player. He will also play defensive back. “Bonding with our teammates is the best part of the off-season and the summer workouts,” said Hale. “The running and conditioning in the sun is tough, but we know it is getting us ready.”

Senior free safety, Chris Blackston (5-10, 180) agreed. “Dealing with the heat just makes us better. People will not want to miss this team. We are going to surprise some people this year,” Blackston added. Coach Bishop also pointed out the important role for Sydnee Johnson (5-9, 210, Sr.) this year. “Sydnee was a top rusher for us last year even in limited work in some games. His number of carries will probably go up this time. We hope he can stay healthy and carry this team offensively.” added the coach.

Adairsville and all other GHSA member football schools begin a mandatory week of conditioning practices next week (July 27-31) in helmets only. They will then begin work in full pads.

The Tigers host Cass in a controlled preseason scrimmage August 14 and then hit the road for their season opener August 21 at Ridgeland.

The four leaders that spoke with Bartow Sports Zone stressed the importance of all their games in 2015, but most agreed there is something special about the Calhoun and Sonoraville matchups. “Those two games just have a great atmosphere,” said Blackston. “We know what happened in those games last year, so we’ll be ready,” the senior concluded.

After the season opener at Ridgeland, the Tigers host Woodland on Thursday, August 27 before moving into their Region 6-AAA slate. Adairsville has region away games at Riggold (Sept. 11), Sonoraville (Sept. 25), Murray County (Oct. 9), and North Murray (Oct. 23). The Tigers’ home schedule includes games with Calhoun (Oct. 2), Lakeview-Ft. Oglethorpe (Oct. 16), Coahulla Creek (Oct. 30), and Gordon Central (Nov. 6).

You can listen to high school football coverage live on your computer, on your mobile device, on your radio this season via Bartow Sports Zone and AM1270 WYXC Cartersville. On this site, just use the menu at the top of the page to select ‘Football Broadcasts.’ Then click the play button on the screen. That will connect you with our radio partner AM1270 WYXC Cartersville. The broadcast schedule includes games involving all four Cartersville and Bartow County football schools — Adairsville, Cartersville, Cass, and Woodland. Bartow Sports Zone and AM1270 WYXC will also broadcast a Friday morning (7am to 8am) coaches show throughout the entire high school season (starting July 24). Coaches from all four local programs are scheduled as regular guests to talk about their teams, upcoming games, and high school football in gneral. Charles Wilson will host the weekly coaches show and perform the play-by-play duties on the games.

Coach Eric Bishop will be one of the featured guests on the Bartow Sports Zone radio show Friday, July 24.

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