Warren Central goes back to basics for Natchez game

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 19, 2003

[9/19/03]Warren Central is trimming the playbook for tonight’s matchup against a Natchez team that is coming off a memorable victory.

The Vikings (1-2), trying to find answers to a stagnant offense, have trimmed the playbook to just 10 plays. The team has been working on those plays “hundreds of times” in practice leading up to the game, coach Robert Morgan said.

“If we decide to put in another play, we’ll take one out,” Morgan said. “That way, we have no excuses for not knowing our assignments. … The bottom line for us on offense is executing the plays and taking care of the ball.”

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The Vikings have been mired in inconsistency since beating Gulfport in the Red Carpet Bowl. Morgan said he doesn’t see the fire in his players’ eyes that Warren Central coaches are used to.

“It has to be personal,” Morgan said. “Football is serious business at Warren Central, it always has been. I don’t feel like we’ve showed that sense of urgency yet.”

The Vikings have one game left before the Region 2-5A schedule starts, and at the beginning of the season, this game appeared to be the easiest on WC’s schedule.

Natchez had been mired in a 13-game losing streak before a stunning 14-12 win over Vicksburg a week ago.

Morgan said he doesn’t quite know what it is, but the Bulldogs’ team that beat Vicksburg was not the same one that lost to South Pike by 31 points and Port Gibson in the season opener.

“They looked like a totally different team than they looked against South Pike,” Morgan said.

The Bulldogs’ line averages about 285 pounds, and allowed running backs to ram the ball down Vicksburg’s throat.

Natchez’s strength is the defensive line, where they kept Vicksburg’s speedy offensive backs in check.

For WC, several position changes will go into effect. Running back Fred Payne, who has been nursing a dinged-up leg, will be replaced by sophomore Dexter Carson, a 230-pounder. Jesse Pedyfoot will play fullback as usual.