Bradwell Institute has its toughest battle tonight — a Region 3-AAAAA contest against Ware County in Waycross.
The Gators (4-0 overall, 2-0 in region) have the size and strength to pound the ball downfield. They average 248 rushing yards per contest to the Tigers’ 196 rushing yards a game. Much like the Tigers, however, the Gators’ passing game has just 56 yards per game. Still, that is better than Bradwell (0-3, 0-1), which has yet to post any passing yards.
The Tigers are coming off a bye week, which gave them extra time to prepare for tonight's challenge. BI head coach Greg Hill said they haven’t placed the focus on Ware County, citing a need to work on their own timing and execution. He said once the team can play fluidly, the wins will come.
Hill runs his practices like a fine-tuned machine, sometimes running the plays alongside his players or taking the snaps under center to teach his young quarterbacks the proper form and methods of passing and handing off the ball.
Junior quarterback Duane Johnson is developing well, and Hill said he is working on developing sophomore Evan Crystal.
“Evan Crystal is a backup that has been getting a ton of reps these past two weeks to give Duane Johnson time to heal up a little,” the coach said. “He is a sophomore so he needs a lot of reps. He is coming along. This is his first year playing football.”
What Crystal brings to the game is evident when standing next to the 6-foot player. He possesses a strong passing arm, and his height gives him a clear line of sight to his receivers.
Hill is patient, as his priority is developing the program and teaching players to execute precision routes, blocks and tackles.
“We need to be able to do what we are supposed to do and get rid of all the little mistakes,” he said.
The game starts at 7:30 p.m.