Clarkston football 01

 

Clarkston High School varsity football player Dante McIntyre and teammate Ricky Williams go through a ball exchange drill as Malcolm Davis prepares to block.

 

 

Clarkston varsity head football coach Terrance Hughey places himself in the "five yards and a cloud of dust" category regarding his coaching philosophy.

Although he certainly doesn't mind his team making the big plays, especially if it results in large gains or, better, touchdowns, it isn't how he views his offensive game plan.

"I would want our offense to be consistent and methodical in steadily moving the ball up field a few yards at a time, and picking up first downs in the process, to give ourselves a greater opportunity to score," he said.

However, having lost 16 seniors to graduation off last year's team, which recorded a 1-8 record, as well as having a comparatively small junior class coming up to replace them, could make that effort a bit more challenging for the Clarkston Angoras, he said.

"Our team will be very young this year, both in age and experience," Hughey said.

"This season, I have about five of those former juniors, who are now seniors, who have played for me, but will likely have to learn how to play new positions this season, and mature in those positions pretty rapidly."

From an overall numbers standpoint, Hughey has four returnees from last season on his offense and two on defense.

However, the coach said, those numbers include players who, although they did play last season, they did so pretty much in different position then they will play this year.

"For example, we have guys this year who, due to team needs, have moved from something like defensive end, where they played last season, to a linebacker position this season," he said.

"Despite not only being a young team this year as well as some guys playing new positions, I believe our strength will be on defense."

He supported that claim saying that, although some players will be in new positions, he believes these players can take the experience they learned playing their former positions and apply it to their new positions.

Another reason Hughey viewed his defense as the strongest element of his club is that Clarkston has a new defensive coordinator, although he is not new to the team.

Former Angora defensive line coach Rammon Spann has been promoted to defensive coordinator.

"He is a very hands-on coach and is out there on the field working with the boys and should do a fine job for us as defensive coordinator," Hughey said.

Although he said it would likely be on offense where his team may not be as strong this season, that unit does have an experienced player at quarterback, Foday Tarawally (6-0, 160).

Hughey said this would be Tarawally's third season under his leadership, so he does bring at least some experience to the offense, although not all of it being at quarterback.

"Foday brings a level of toughness to the quarterback position because, if things are not going well for us on the field, he will stay in there and battle," he said.

In addition to Tarawally's toughness, there is one other element about his signal-caller that pleases the coach.

"Foday wants to prove to me, as his head coach, and to himself, that he can be our quarterback," Hughey said.

"We are going to put the ball in his hands and allow him to throw it and, if he makes a mistake, he will learn from it."

This season, Hughey's club will institute a tight-end set as part of its offensive game plan and a junior, Dante McIntyre (6-2, 185), who is also a linebacker on defense, will occupy that offensive position for the first time.

"Dante plays on our basketball team as well, so he is an athlete," the coach said.

"All we need to do is get him the ball and let him makes plays for us."

If the Angoras are going to move the ball offensively, its offensive line has to open holes in opposing defenses.

That task will fall to junior center Juwan Jones (5-11, 230) who, the coach said, knows the plays and what his responsibilities are at the line of scrimmage.

"He also makes sure his offensive teammates are in the right position as well," Hughey said.

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