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Waycross Firebirds seek vengeance on Hurricanes
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The last time James Cox coached and played for a semi-pro football team from Waycross (2000-2001) things were a little rough.
“Back then we had another team in Waycross, but the guy who ran it was a ripoff artist,” he said. “Also my team was not any better. We had team fights and there were too many hands in the pot trying to runs things.”
Cox said all that has changed. He is now the sole coach and manager of the newly formed Waycross Firebirds semi-pro team.
“This is our first season and we have 55 players on the roster,” Cox said. “I was very adamant about getting a game up against Coach Sharp again because back then every game I played in my career was against the Hurricanes. Coach James Sharp (of the Hurricanes) is a class act and you are all lucky to have him. “
Cox said all but one of his players used to play for high school ball in Waycross. His standout running back, Alexander Lacey, came from Lanier High.
Hoping to out play his former opponents and mentor coach, Cox said he plans to use a multiple set offense, a basic 4-3 cover 2 defense and his large roster to take the Hurricanes down to a tropical storm.
“Sharp has some soldiers on his team so we are going to use our numbers to outlast them,” Cox said. “We want to control the ball and substitute a lot to keep in fresh legs.”
The Waycross Firebirds will start Shalom Davis at quarterback in tomorrow’s pre-season game scheduled for 6 p.m. at the adult football field on Fort Stewart.
Cox said the community support in Waycross is starting to come around. People are starting to regain trust, knowing that Cox, a law enforcement officer for the department of corrections, is serious about his team.  
Cox said he hopes the Hinesville community is also supporting his friend, coach Sharp and the Hurricanes as they try to dethrone last years’ champions the South Georgia Warriors.
“The Hurricanes really play against some tough competitors, like the Atlanta Prime who is ranked in the top 5 of the nation,” Cox said. “Last year they came close to getting the Warriors who ended up beating the Prime for the championship.”
As for the Firebirds, the coach said he wants the ring for himself.
“I think I have a team that can play with anybody,” he said. “We are scheduled to play against the Central Florida Thoroughbreds who have not lost a season game in three years. They blow everybody out but I think I have a team that can take them.”
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