August 26, 2010 8:34:00 AM
Lamar County High School football coach Ken Adams didn''t get a scouting report from South Lamar High''s jamboree against Pickens County like he wanted.
On Thursday, Adams sent former Lamar County player Lance Bobbitt to Reform, Ala., to scout the jamboree, but Bobbitt didn''t return home with a scouting report.
"He got ran off," Adams said. "It''s such an intense rivalry the South Lamar crowd ran him off."
Adams said the South Lamar fans easily recognized Bobbitt.
When hearing about the incident, South Lamar coach Josh Harper laughed it off by only saying, "We''ve got good fans in the stands at South Lamar."
Adams hoped to get a scouting report to help his team prepare for its season opener at 7 p.m. Friday against South Lamar in Millport, Ala.
Both teams played jamborees Thursday, with Lamar County beating Sipsey Valley 20-6 and Northside 7-6, and South Lamar losing 32-7 to Pickens County.
Adams and Harper said their teams have to improve before clashing Friday night.
"We did OK," Adams said. "We made a couple of mistakes like turning the ball over and not blocking the right guys. We made young mistakes.
"I''m not trying to make excuses about us being young or anything like that, but when we had physicals the doctor asked out kids how old they were and they were still using halves. They were 14 1/2. Nobody cared. I told our guys, ''You''ve got to be ready to play and it doesn''t matter how old you are. Nobody cares how much experience you you''ve got (or don''t have).''"
Harper had different issues he hopes the Stallions will be able to address before Friday.
"We looked decent in coverage," Harper said. "We had some containment issues and we''ve worked on that this week. I wasn''t pleased at all how we came off the ball as far as the offensive line goes. I wasn''t pleased with our offensive execution as a whole. We''ve still got a lot of work to do."
It will be the ninth-straight season Lamar County and South Lamar will kick off the season against each other. The last time the teams didn''t begin a season against each other was 2001.
South Lamar leads the series 15-10, but has lost the last two meetings, including a 61-20 loss last year.
Both coaches said playing a rivalry game adds excitement to the start of the season.
"It creates a good buildup for the year," Harper said. "This is a spirited rivalry. It just gets your heart pumping for football. It''s Vernon. That''s all you can say. That''s what''s going through our minds this week. We''ve got a lot to make up for from last year."
Harper played at South Lamar and is in his second season as the head coach at the school, so he is well aware of the rivalry.
Adams, who is in his fourth season at Lamar County, has learned the intensity of the rivalry.
"It''s one of those things where you''ve got to get geared up early," Adams said. "South Lamar and Vernon has always been an intense rivalry."
Eric "Turbo" Hudson has replaced two-year starter Michael Bradford at quarterback. Hudson, who played running back last season, will be a key player to stop, Harper said. He compares Hudson to Pickens County quarterback and safety Deion Curry, The Commercial Dispatch Defensive Player of the Year last season.
"(Playing Pickens County) gave us practice against a mobile quarterback like Deion Curry," Harper said. "It gave us practice for Eric Hudson, the Turbo man out of Vernon. I put them in the same boat. They''re both very athletic, both very good backs, and they can hurt you if you don''t do your job. We''ve just got to anticipate he''s going to be a mobile quarterback and we have to contain him."
Harper said the Stallions also will have to be ready to stop running backs Ken Hill and Lemetrius Williams.
Adams said he has been pleased with Hudson''s transition from tailback and receiver to quarterback.
Lamar County will be without backup quarterback and free safety Brian Price (broken arm). Adams hopes to have him back before the end of the season.
Dallas Cockerham will back up Hudson at quarterback.