Game: Marietta (2-0) at Collins Hill (1-0), 7:30 p.m.
Last Year: Marietta 38, Collins Hill 13
All-time series: Marietta leads 1-0
Prediction: Marietta 35, Collins Hill 17
Last week, Marietta passed what could be its most difficult test of the regular season with flying colors. Now, the Blue Devils are moving on and preparing to head out on the road for the second time in three weeks.
Marietta will travel to Collins Hill to take on the Eagles today in a rematch of a one-sided affair last season.
Although the two teams met last season and Marietta won by a comfortable 38-13 margin, that experience has been rendered all but useless for the Blue Devils when it comes to planning for this year’s matchup. The Eagles overhauled their schemes on both sides of the ball, giving Marietta an entirely new look to prepare for this season.
Collins Hill traded in the Wing-T for a spread attack and the 3-3 Stack for a more traditional 3-4.
“It’s almost like we didn’t play them because we’re preparing for totally different schemes now,” Morgan said. “Nothing we haven’t seen before, but still different than what they played last year so we can’t just look back at last year really for anything other than a couple of personnel things.”
Regardless of this added challenge, Marietta is riding high. It took a touchdown with 14 seconds left on the clock, but the Blue Devils came out of Friday’s nationally televised matchup Philadelphia powerhouse St. Joseph’s Prep victorious on Ricky White’s 23 yard touchdown reception from Harrison Bailey.
“I liked the way we continued to stay in the game,” Marietta coach Richard Morgan said. “Our defense played great. To produce a 70 yard drive with a minute left I think says a lot about the makeup of our team, the character of our team. That’s why you play these games, to see what your team is all about. I think I found out a lot of good things about us.”
In the same breath, Morgan expressed his desire to do what he and his program always want to do after a big win — move on to the next one.
“We focus on 1-0 every week so when Friday was over, it was over and we moved on,” Morgan said. “As long as you keep that perspective, you’ll always be ok, it’s when you dwell on things and you think you’ve arrived, then you start having some problems and we don’t ever let that happen.”
While Marietta was battling St. Joseph’s, their Week 3 opponents orchestrated a comeback victory of their own over another Cobb County opponent. Collins Hill escaped in even more dramatic fashion than Marietta, beating Walton on a touchdown pass as time expired to win the game 12-10.
“They had a huge win last week against Walton, that was big for them,” Morgan said. “Obviously they’re playing well and they’re confident. I think our guys need to be ready, they’ve got some really good athletes and they did a good job last week against Walton on defense and in their special teams. They’re a well-rounded team, we’ve got to be playing our best football.”
For Morgan, the key going forward is simply more of the same. There are things he would like to see fixed up, mistakes that they could do without, but overall, he’s happy with what he’s seen from his team so far this season.
“We dropped too many passes and we committed too many penalties (last week),” Morgan said. “We’ve got to tighten those things up, but I think the effort was tremendous and obviously we were very happy about the results.”