WC pair, ex-Hinds coach make return tonight

Published 12:00 am Thursday, September 12, 2002

Hinds’ Mason Denham, a Port Gibson native, runs for yardage in the Eagles’ opening win over Northwest. (The Vicksburg Post/Melanie Duncan)

[09/12/02]Hinds won’t be celebrating homecoming Thursday night, although it may seem like it for Itawamba Community College.

A pair of former Warren Central standouts Ken Thompson and Josh Brogdon and former Hinds assistant coach Jeff Terrill will be making a return to Joe Renfroe Stadium. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.

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“It should be real exciting,” said Terrill, who lost his first game as coach of the Indians, 21-14, to Gulf Coast one week ago. “If it wasn’t for the coaches, administration and players at Hinds, I may not have had this opportunity.”

If it weren’t for Terrill, Thompson may not have had an opportunity.

Thompson started at linebacker on a Vikings’ defense that held opponents to just under 11 points per game last season. He was looked at by Hinds, but not heavily.

Enter Terrill, who recruited the Warren County area while at Hinds.

“Coach (Robert) Morgan kept telling me he could play,” Terrill said. “I knew they had linebackers returning at Hinds so I thought he’d be a good fit here. Unfortunately, we had already obligated ourselves to a linebacker.

“I told Ken we didn’t have anything, but asked if he’d like to walk on.”

Thompson made the decision to be a walk-on, but a twist of fate earned him a scholarship.

Days before summer practices were set to start, the linebacker Terrill had signed injured his arm, opening the door for Thompson.

He saw limited action in the Gulf Coast loss, mostly on special teams. Terrill said he wanted to get Thompson more time as a linebacker.

“He probably didn’t get the amount of snaps he wanted to,” Terrill said. “But we do plan on using him more.”

Brogdon, a bruising defensive and offensive lineman as a Viking, is still looking for his first action on the field as well. A nasty flu-like virus sidelined Brogdon for the team’s opener, but Terrill said he returned to practice this week and may see playing time.

Whomever takes the field for the young Indians’ team will have their work cut out for them.

The No. 11 Eagles are fresh off an upset win over the nation’s top-ranked team, Northwest. Port Gibson’s Mason Denham and ex-Vicksburg High receiver Von Mixon combined for three scores in the Eagles’ win.

Attempts to reach Hinds coach Gene Murphy were unsuccessful.

Itawamba, which lost to Hinds for the state championship in 2000, was on the brink of beating Gulf Coast in the opener, but four tries to score inside the 5-yard line went for naught.

“We definitely missed some opportunities on offense,” Terrill said. “We have a young team and certainly need to grow up and mature and play four quarters.”