Samuel D. Logan
The Valdosta Daily Times
The Brooks County Trojans faced adversity even before their first game of the season, dealing with the tragic loss of three cornerstones of the Trojan defense. The Trojan football team battled each week, compiling only two losses on the season, ending the season with a 12-2 record.
For the second straight season, the Trojans were undefeated at home, where the Trojans seemed to be a completely different team.
The Trojan offense was led again by Malkom Parrish, a dual-threat player who was the quarterback and safety for the team, not only this past season, but for the last four.
Parrish used his legs to run over defenses that were fooled by the Trojans’ option plays. Through the year, Parrish helped lead the Trojan offense to an average of 33 points per game. The Trojans' lowest scoring game came in their fourth-round playoff loss to Lovett, when they were only able to put up 12 points.
“I thought it was a very exciting season,” said head coach Maurice Freeman. "Based on the tragedy that hit us earlier on in the season, our guys fought well all season.”
Making it to the Class 2-A final four was an accomplishment that none of the current Trojans had experienced prior to this season. Notable seniors leaving the dynamic Trojans offense include receiver/defensive back Deric Herring, running back Mitavius Brooks, defensive tackle Torre Bryant and most notably Parrish. While the Trojans have been known for an explosive offense in the past, the loss of Herring and Parrish might change the Trojans' philosophy on offense.
“We had few up and downs but overall it was a great season. It will almost be impossible to replace Herring and Parrish. I don’t know honestly how we can replace them,” said Freeman. “The only thing we can do is go in another direction. One thing for sure, the replacements will be hard working men.”
The defense will be revamped during the football break, with the Trojan staff hoping to find new secondary and linebackers to replace the departing players. Defensive tackle Darren Andersen and receiver/defensive back Exavius Medlock will be returning to help lead the new defensive efforts for 2014.
“Darren Andersen will be back, and we are very excited about having him back to clog the middle. Medlock is also returning and is an explosive player; we are excited about having him back as well, on both sides of the ball,” said Freeman.
One of the most exciting games of the season was against the Thomasville Bulldogs, Freeman cites. The Trojans won the battle 30-23.
“It was a back and forth rivalry game. The end wasn’t decided until 45 seconds left in the game, so you never knew who was going to win,” said Freeman.
In a less memorable game, Freeman cites that the fourth-round loss to the Lovett Lions left him with the worst feeling of the season.
“I don’t think we played well at all that game, the players and the coaches. I give myself a grade of D for that game; I would love to retake that test,” said Freeman.
A Trojan player to watch for the upcoming 2014 season will be running back Devon Wims, who will have the job of filling the shoes of Brooks, who will be graduating. Wims saw action this season, scoring a touchdown in the playoff game against Bleckley County.
“(Wims) will have a break-out year next year for sure,” said Freeman.
The Trojans fought hard year and rewarded fans with another exciting year of Trojan football. What will be to come for the Trojans as the 2014 football season approaches?
“I am happy that our fans followed us the whole season. It took a lot of dedication, and we brought the hammer from the first game until the end and hope that carries over until next season,” added Freeman.