mce

McEachern’s Carlos Del Rio-Wilson looks for a receiver downfield as Hillgrove’s James Dioh applies pressure during Friday night action. Staff-Kelly J. Huff

McEachern will host a 21-team 7-on-7 tournament Wednesday at Walter Cantrell Stadium.

The tournament is set to include six other Cobb County teams -- Allatoona, Hillgrove, Pope, Sprayberry, Walton and Wheeler -- in addition to the Indians. Other teams of note include Carrollton, Creekside and Paulding County.

Admission is free. Pool play is set to start at 9 a.m., with the single-elimination tournament beginning around 3:30. The bracket will include the top six teams from pool play, with the top two teams receiving byes.

Derek Cook, preparing for his first season as McEachern's offensive coordinator after a tenure as the head coach at Kell, said hosting the event is a point of pride.

“It’s always great to bring people to your place and showcase your facilities and put your best foot forward,” Cook said.

It will be McEachern’s second time this summer competing in a 7-on-7 tournament. Two weeks ago, the Indians competed at the Kirby Smart 7-on-7 in Athens.

First-year McEachern coach Franklin Stephens said Wednesday’s event will be a good way for his team to wrap up the month before the Georgia High School Association’s mandatory off-week starts.

“They’ve had a big month of June,” Stephens said. “Hopefully, they’ll come in and compete well and have some fun.”

The Indians are in the middle of installing a new offensive system, and Cook said learning the new terminology has been the most difficult part of the transition.

He believes, however, that the offense is fully capable of adjusting to a new style.

“It’s a great group of young men,” Cook said. “They’re very intelligent. They work extremely hard. They are beyond gifted offensively.”

McEachern will balance the running and passing attacks during the season in an attempt to keep defenses guessing, but there is nothing to hide in 7-on-7 tournaments with teams required to throw the ball.

Cook still plans on incorporating running backs into the passing game. Last year, Jordon Simmons had 391 receiving yards out of the backfield.

McEacherns’s receiving corps is led by rising senior Javon Baker, an Alabama commit, and junior Dacari Collins, a four-star recruit. The team is currently working with two quarterbacks, Carlos Del Rio-Wilson and Bryce Archie.

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