• John Macon Gillespie

Coverage Breakdown: TCPS @ Smithville

Players To Watch

TCPS Eagles

Bryce Hawkins | QB

Last season star linebacker Bo Robertson played quarterback as the Eagles searched for an answer at the position. So you don’t need me to tell you how excited head coach Shaune Holiday and offensive coordinator David Wilkerson were when Hawkins came to Belden in fall camp. He’s been able to take the offense to a new level with dual-threat athleticism. He’s thrown for nearly 900 yards while rushing for more than 500, with 11 rushing touchdowns and 10 passing scores.

Cody Coggins | ATH

Coggins is now in his third season of playing significant snaps for the varsity squad, and he has certainly blossomed on both sides of the ball. He’s had to with John Mark Jolly gone to graduation. So far the junior leads the team with 710 rushing yards, on top of five rushing scores. On defense he’s tied for the team lead with two sacks, and also 41 tackles and three forced fumbles.

Bo Robertson | LB

Coach Shaune Holiday told me a few weeks ago, and it’s easy to see if you’ve spent any time around this TCPS program, that Robertson is the heart and sole of this team. When he was a freshman the school had no football program. Over the last two seasons he’s been a part of 17 wins. And as a senior he’s looking at the playoffs. He is a tackling machine from his middle linebacker spot, and he’s tallied 33 tackles despite missing three games with a shoulder injury.

Brandon Wood | ATH

Another senior that’s been with the program since it’s restart in 2015. Wood has grown as much, if not more, than the football program itself. The last few season he’s played on the line in addition to his kicking duties. After a body transformation he now finds himself a receiving threat at tight end/h-back. He’s caught 17 passes for over 250 yards and three scores. He’s also added 24 tackles on defense, in addition to being one of the most accurate kickers in North Mississippi.

Cooper Adair | ATH

Adair has done it all for the Eagles this season. He’s the team’s leading receiver with 345 receiving yards and six touchdowns. On defense he’s tallied 45 tackles, a sack and an interception. He’s kind of player you have to have to be a contender in 1A football.

Khi Holiday | ATH

Though only a freshman, Holiday has made plenty of plays on the edge this season. That includes being a deep-threat at receiver and a sticky corner on defense. He’s caught 14 passes for 144 yards and a touchdown, and also leads the team with three interceptions.

Smithville Seminoles

Cameron Wardlaw | QB

The senior has been a consistent presence at quarterback for the Seminoles this season. He’s totaled 14 touchdowns on the

Dustin Moffett | ATH

Few players across the state are more productive than Moffett. He leads the Seminoles in rushing yards, receiving yards, rushing touchdowns and receiving touchdowns. He has rushed for 931 and 13 scores, and caught for 471 yards and eight touchdowns. On defense he’s totaled over 30 tackles with three interceptions.

Caleb Leech | ATH

Leech is another versatile playmaker who makes his hay running the football. He’s rushed for 710 yards and eight touchdowns. But he’s also tallied 55 tackles this season. Four times this season, including last week vs. Ashland, he’s rushed for 100 yards or more. He will need to bring it again this week to help Smithville score a big division win.

Chet Moffett | LB

Moffett is the team’s leading tackler as he’s already at 110 tackles this season. On top of that he’s tallied 20 tackles for loss, four sacks, three fumble recoveries and two forced fumbles. He’s the leader of a strong unit and he’s in on seemingly every play.

Will McNeese | ATH

McNeese is yet another player capable of making plays on the of the ball for Smithville. He leads the team with five sacks, to go with 55 tackles and 12 for loss. On offense he’s second on the team with 130 receiving yards.

Layne Williams | LB

Another fantastic Nole linebacker is Williams, who like many of his teammates, is very versatile. He’s second on the team with 95 tackles and 15 tackles for loss, but he leads the team with four interceptions. He will be a big factor against a TCPS team that uses the run to set up its entire offense.

Keys To The Game

Both of these teams are fighting to be able to host a home playoff game in a couple of weeks, so it’s sure to be a dogfight. However, Smithville will have a built-in advantage with this contest being at home in front of their loyal fans.

Both teams have the capability to keep it balanced with the passing game, but it’s the running game that makes them go. Both teams average over 200 yards per game on the ground, however TCPS has a slight talent advantage in the form of Bryce Hawkins. Hawkins can run it and bomb it deep with touch and accuracy.

The trenches should have something to say when these two physical teams meet, and the Noles have a depth and talent advantage there. However, this is an area that TCPS has grown in, hence their success in region 1-1A this year.


Dustin Moffett. How can he not be the x-factor in this one? He does so much for his team and he’s bound to make a winning play either on the offensive or defensive side in this one. Whether it be a long run, a big interception or some other way, watch for it.

**Photo courtesy of Janice Howell

#JohnLukeMcCord #TCPS #Smithville

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