VALDOSTA –– It is finally here.
After having uncertainty of a season, Lowndes football returns on Saturday, Sept. 5 when they travel to face the Archer Tigers at Archer High School in the Corky Kell Classic.
The Vikings will have to make the four-hour, I-75 North trip to Lawrenceville to meet the Tigers in their backyard.
“We’re going to have some activities and stop some on the way,” Vikings head coach Jamey DuBose said. We are going to break the trip up half and half to move our legs around. We may go up the day before with the early start to make sure we get enough rest in, so we are not rushed on gameday. It is difficult to go that far away for an opener. We have a lot of new starters so I’m anxious to see how well we react.”
DuBose even acknowledged the fact it is a different locker room and walk to the field for the team.
“We’ve even talked about adversity on the road and the locker room being different, the walk from the locker room to the field, and the fact that we’re playing on grass rather than turf,” DuBose said. “We are going to handle all the things that are different and make it like our own home. The team that does well as a visitor is a team that can seem that like their own home field.”
Coach DuBose is looking to junior quarterback Jacurri Brown to keep the offensive tempo in check along with communicating well with the young offensive line.
“Jacurri has been progressing with his reads and able to control the tempos,” DuBose said. “We have about 3-4 tempos we play at, so he is going to have to know how to push the tempo and then come down when we need to. We will be doing a lot of checking since it is the first game and we may not know their defensive tendencies. He is going to really have to communicate well with the guys up front because we have five new offensive linemen that will be getting their first start. Jacurri is going to have to help them out a little bit with his legs and arms.”
Brown says that going near Atlanta will remind him of the sour taste left in his mouth after losing the state championship and will do whatever it takes to get rid of it as he turns seventeen the day before the game.
“I’m looking to get the dub and getting that win back from when we lost,” Brown said. “We have a little sour taste in our mouth especially since we are going back up in Atlanta. We have to do something and give Coach DuBose his first win as Lowndes’ head coach and build our confidence to playing in December.”
Archer is coming off a 9-4 season which ended in the GHSA Class 7A playoffs against Parkview.
They lost their quarterback Carter Peevy, who graduated and now plays at Mercer University.
Now, the Tigers will have junior quarterback Andrew Lane, who only attempted 10 passes a season ago, under center.
But Lane can rely on the two-headed monster in the backfield in Renoldo Spivey Jr. and Schmari Campbell, who combined for over 1,300 yards and 21 touchdowns.
Lowndes has outside linebacker Thomas Davis returning and will be wearing No. 2 instead of 95 for his final season as a Viking.
Davis racked up 11.5 sacks a season ago. He was assisted by defensive lineman Leon Williams, who is also returning after an 8.5 sack season in 2019.
The Vikings’ defense must hold the Tigers’ rushing game in check ,but also be prepared for the unknown as Archer has a new quarterback on the loose.
The Vikings’ Corky Kell Classic game kicks off Saturday, Sept. 5 at 2 p.m. at Archer High School in Lawrenceville (2255 New Hope Rd, Lawrenceville, Ga. 30045).