2008 Prep Football:The Notebook
From staff reports
Getting ready for another prep football season …What does a coach do when he has a junior tailback ó in this case K.P. Parks ó who has averaged more than 2,000 yards rushing in his first two seasons?
You let him be himself, according to West Rowan coach Scott Young.
“You don’t want to overcoach talent like that,” Young said.
What the coaches like about Parks is, as Young puts it, “his great vision. He runs where they ain’t.”
NO. 1: When Parks was named as one of the nation’s top 50 juniors by The Sporting News, he was the only representative from North Carolina.
RUNNING WILD: While East’s Thomas Lowe and Salisbury’s Dario Hamilton are challenging school rushing marks, Parks already owns the school and county record.
Only two players in state history have officially carried more than 1,000 times ó Western Guilford’s Anthony Saunders (1,132) and Ragsdale’s Toney Baker (1,028). Parks has carried 577 times in two seasons. If he continues that pace, he’ll finish with 1,154 carries.
Parks has 24 100-yard games in 25 career outings. The state record for 100-yard games officially belongs to Maiden’s Tommy Henry, who posted 44.
Parks has 4,257 rushing yards and 52 touchdowns in two seasons.
He’s unlikely to catch record-holder T.A. McClendon, who scored 128 TDs at Albemarle, but he’s on pace to make the top five. A.L. Brown’s Nick Maddox ranks third with 103 TDs.
WINNING TEN: Since 1994, teams have played 11 regular-season games instead of 10. It’s much easier to get into the expanded playoffs than it used to be.
Teams also play a deciding overtime now if they’re even at the end of regulation instead of settling for ties.
Still, 10 wins remains a meaningful measure of a super season.
West Rowan is working on a streak unprecedented in the county with win totals of 10, 13, 11 and 11 the past four seasons.
The only other double-digit winner in West history was the 2000 team that won 12.
East Rowan had that historic 13-0 season in 1969 and won 10 in 1997. A forfeit knocked the Mustangs out of 10-win territory in 1970.
North Rowan won 11 in 1982, 1985 and 2001. It won 12 in 1992 and 1994.
South most recently was in double digits when it won 11 games in 1983. South won 10 in 1977 and 1981.
Boyden was 10-1-1 in 1955 when it won a state championship in the largest classification.
Boyden won 10 games in 1970 under coach Pete Stout, and Stout’s program, known as the Salisbury Hornets starting with the 1971 season, won 10 in ’71 and 11 in WNCHSAA championship seasons in 1973 and 1974.
Salisbury settled for 8-2 in 1972 with close SPC losses to Statesville and Concord. Still, Stout won double figures four times in five years with a 10-game regular season.
Salisbury also won 10 in 1988, 12 in 1995 and 2004, then 11 in 2006.
NEW GUY: As always, there are many new faces showing up at different schools.
Salisbury has welcomed Linares Pagan, a transfer from North Mecklenburg. The junior played quarterback for Glenn Padgett and also excelled on defense at linebacker and defensive end.
Pagan alternated at quarterback the first half of last season before moving to defense. He also played fullback.
“He’s a very coachable quarterback,” said Padgett, who coached Salisbury back in 1998. “He has a savvy for the game.”
Padgett doesn’t expect Pagan to play quarterback at Salisbury. He’s more of a thrower.
“He’s not a true option guy,” Padgett said. “But he’s going to help Salisbury. He’s a quiet leader. He’ll be an excellent addition to the program.”
Pagan’s brother played nose guard for Padgett for three seasons.
“Linares has got a good pedigree,” Padgett said.
EQUIPMENT ISSUES: Salisbury coach Joe Pinyan said he thinks junior Dominique Phillips can be one of the best free safeties in the state before he graduates.
Now, if Phillips can only keep up with his jersey.
Last season, Pinyan brought him up from the jayvees. In the time between Thursday night’s game and the start of Friday’s varsity contest, Phillips lost his jersey.
“Maybe he runs so fast, he runs right out of his equipment,” Pinyan laughed. “We may have to give him his jersey right before the game.”
SUPERSTITIOUS: Pinyan said kicker Frankie Cardelle asked to change numbers this year.
“He said he didn’t want No. 8,” Pinyan said.
Why? That was the number Cardelle wore when he broke his arm two seasons ago. He is now No. 10.
LET’S PLAY: Pinyan’s former assistant J.K. Adkins became the head coach at Patton High in Morganton last season, but there weren’t enough upperclassmen to field a competitive team. He finally gets the varsity program going in 2008.
What was it like not being on the sidelines on Friday nights?
“It was horrible,” Adkins said. “I’d go home and cry myself to sleep. I’m glad we’ll be busy this fall.”
BUSY SUMMER: Sometimes a baseball player has a hard time getting to football during the summer. It wasn’t a problem for West quarterback Brantley Horton, who played for the Mooresville Legion team.
“I never had a quarterback who was also a baseball player make it to as much summer stuff,” Young said.
Horton also attended a quarterbacks camp at Furman.
WELCOME, MATT: Young is glad to have Matt Turchin as his kicker this season. Turchin contacted the coaches about kicking.
“He realized we needed a solid kicker,” Young said. “He went to a lot of camps.”
Young is confident West won’t struggle as much with the kicking game as it did last year. He still feels the Falcons should’ve entered the playoffs undefeated, but there was a 20-18 loss to West Iredell. Three extra points and West wins.
“This year,” Young said, “our touchdowns need to equal seven points.”
GREEN TO ORANGE: Avery Cutshaw was let go as head coach at North Rowan and he retired. That doesn’t mean he has left the game.
Cutshaw can be seen filming at Carson’s practices filming. His son, Zach, has transferred to Carson.
“He’s like any dad, taking a vested interest in what we’re trying to do,” Carson coach Mark Woody said.
Woody doesn’t hesitate to consult Dad either.
“If I feel I can learn something, I’m going to ask,” Woody said.
BE THERE: Here are some can’t-miss games this season:
Aug. 22: The reign of Tasker Fleming at North Rowan begins at juggernaut West Rowan.
Aug. 29: The best week of the season? East at Salisbury, West at Davie, Carson at North and South at A.L. Brown. Don’t you wish you could be at all of them?
Sept. 19: West at Northwest Cabarrus: This has turned into quite a rivalry.
Sept. 26: Carson at Lake Norman: Some “experts” feel this will be the Cougars’ first victory in school history.
Oct. 3: South at Carson: This neighborhood battle heads to China Grove for the first time.
Oct. 10: Salisbury at West Davidson: Can the Hornets finally beat their nemesis?
Oct. 17: West at East. Nuff said. Also, the CCC title may be decided when Salisbury plays host to Lexington.
THE NEXT LEVEL: Two Davie players have already received college scholarship offers.
Perry James, a lightning-quick defensive back and kick returner who can also play receiver, has been offered by Skip Holtz at East Carolina.
What makes the offer unusual is James missed the entire 2007 season with a shoulder injury.
“That’s real good for somebody that really hasn’t seen him to go out on a limb and throw an offer out there,” Davie coach Doug Illing said.
Running back James Mayfield, who ran for 1,476 yards as a junior, has been offered by the Akron Zips, who were 4-8 last year.
“They play good football, and they supposedly have a beautiful facility,” Illing said.
THANKS, COACH: Illing has sent 30 War Eagles to college during his tenure. The current group is especially impressive.
It includes Cooter Arnold at North Carolina; Ted Randolph at Wake Forest; Raeshon McNeil at Notre Dame; Billy Riddle at Appalachian State; and D.J. Rice and Ryan Boehm at Coastal Carolina.
BIG CATCH: The Davie football team not only can make the big catch on the field, the War Eagles do it off the field as well.
Assistant coach Mike Herndon took son Carson and starting quarterback Zach Illing out on his boat “Knot-A-Clue” off Ocean Isle recently.
The result? King mackerel.
One weighed 34 pounds, and another checked in at 32.
BECK CHECK: North Rowan receiver Ken “The End” Beck hauled in 19 passes in a 13-12 loss to Davie County on Nov. 11, 1966.
The Vietnam vet still holds the county record for receptions in a game, and he’s second on the state’s all-time list. North Johnston’s Deangelo Ruffin caught 25 passes in a 53-9 rout of Harnett Central a few years ago.
The Post will be announcing its all-time team for the Cavaliers’ first 50 years of football this fall, and Beck will be a candidate.
WHERE ARE THEY NOW? South Rowan’s all-county linebacker Derek Davis is likely to redshirt at UNC Pembroke this year after undergoing ankle surgery.
Former North Rowan linebacker Chris Johnston is working with the athletic training department at North Carolina, and he got to help out with NFL star and UNC alum Willie Parker recently.
Quinton Faulkner, who picked off nine passes for Davie and was CPC Defensive Player of the Year last season, is a student at East Carolina.-
YER OUT: A.L. Brown tight ends coach Jeremy Ryan spent the summer umpiring American Legion baseball games.
Ryan worked the Cherryville-Wilmington and Hope Mills-Gastonia games on the first day of the state tournament.
NEW LOOK: Stellar A.L. Brown defensive end Dwayne Stroud has traded in his wild-child mohawk for a close-cropped corporate look and bulked up to 220 pounds.
“Got stretch marks from so much time in the weight room,” Stroud said.
Stroud attended several summer camps and has a combination of athletics and academics that has attracted the interest of Wofford.
Former A.L. Brown player Lee Basinger, a Shrine Bowler, enjoyed a brilliant career at Wofford.
“The first thing Wofford coaches talked to me about was Basinger,” Stroud said.
LOOKING GOOD: A.L. Brown junior linebacker Terrance Johnson is limited while he recovers from ACL surgery, but Stroud believes the big man will be back before midseason.
“Terrance will be straight,” Stroud said. “And he’s already looking like one of those USC guys.”
CHANGES: The Wonders lost offensive coaches Kirkley Russell and Andre Cook but have added Alex Nelson and Lanny Gray.
ALL-NAME TEAM: Salisbury’s Si Vue, Dominique Dismuke and South’s Skylar Stamey are in the mix.
But the clear winner is the man they call “Special K” at Carson: Joseph Keophilavanh.
And the guy with the name that might be the easiest to misspell plays for Brian Hinson at East Rowan: Chris Demitraszek.
ANOTHER SPECIAL K: Former Catawba defensive lineman Piotr Kalinowski is now on Brian Hinson’s East Rowan staff.
Hinson said contacting Kalinowski was one of the first three calls he made when he was named head coach of the Mustangs in 2006.
Kalinowski, an assistant at Salisbury last season, coaches linebackers at East.
GOOD GENES: New South Rowan receivers coach Drew Rucks’ father, Arthur, played basketball at Winston-Salem State.
Ronnie Gallagher, Mike London and Brian Pitts contributed to the notebook.