By Todd Lamberth for TN High School Football
Before the season, I laid out the case for why eight teams in the mid-state could be poised for a breakout this season and possibly surprise some fans and opponents.
Five weeks into the season, those eight teams, which combined to go 31-51 a year ago, have combined to go 22-16 this year.
At the halfway point of the season for most of these teams, we take a look at where each of those teams are so far this season.
Siegel Stars (Last season: 3-8, this season 2-3)
Siegel’s location is one of their biggest opponents as they remain in a region with the other Murfreesboro schools in Blackman, Oakland, and Riverdale. Two of their three losses have come by Blackman and Riverdale, while the other was a 45-42 heartbreaker to Ravenwood.
There’s still reason for optimism for the Stars, however, as the offense has passed the 40 point mark three times already this season. Senior running back Lelan Wilhoite leads the attack as he has racked up nearly 1,000 yards already this season and is averaging over 200 yards per game.
The Stars look for their first region win this weekend as they travel to Warren County (2-3) on Friday.
Rossview (Last season 5-6, this season 3-2)
The Hawks opened the season with two tough losses by a combined nine points. Since then, they’ve won three straight by a combined 52 points. In his first season at Rossview, Todd Hood currently has his team at 2-0 in region play and in prime position for a playoff spot with three region games remaining.
Averaging over 35 points per game during their three-game win streak, the Hawk offense is led by junior Fred Orr and his 642 rushing yards and 10 touchdowns.
They’ll look to continue their streak this week as they host a winless Dickson County team before they travel to region foe Mt. Juliet, who has yet to allow a point this season.
Northeast (5-5, 3-2)
After missing the playoffs last season, Northeast is off to a 2-0 start in region play and are just three wins away from surpassing their win total from a year ago.
After posting a season low point total in week four against Rossview of 12, they posted a season high of 57, more than any point total last season, last week against Dyer County. Junior Tyrique Freeman, who has 573 yards on the ground this season and is averaging over seven yards per carry, leads the offensive attack.
The Eagles face region leader West Creek (4-1) this week. Their opponents in their four remaining games to end the season have a combined 9-11 record halfway through the year.
Northwest (6-5, 1-4)
The Vikings have had a tough start to the season, being outscored 166-84 through five games and averaging less than 200 yards of offense per game.
Things don’t get easier for Northwest either, as they face Mt. Juliet this week before ending the season with four straight region games, with their next three games coming on the road.
Grace Christian (2-7, 1-3)
Weather has caused the Lions to only have four games so far this season and of their three loses, two came to teams with 4-1 records five games in.
While they sit at 0-2 in region play, Rusty Smith’s squad still has four region games remaining and has two of the top team’s in the region in Cornersville (3-0) and Richland (1-1) out of the way.
Eagleville (3-6, 4-1)
The Eagles matched their win total from a year ago just three games into this season and have looked like a completely different team.
After scoring just 208 points a year ago, Floyd Walker’s squad has already posted 147 points this season. Junior quarterback Ethan Cobb has continued his progression as he has thrown for 700 yards this season.
Eagleville’s lone loss this season has come to undefeated Lewis County by a 29-21 score. Their four remaining region opponents have a combined seven wins on the season.
White House (0-10, 4-0)
Veteran head coach Jeff Porter ended White House’s 13-game losing streak right away this season and has proceeded to lead his team to an undefeated mark four games into the season. While only one of their first three opponents has a win thus far, the Blue Devils proved their record is no fluke as they defeated Springfield 16-14 last week.
White House has done it with their defense, as they have allowed just 37 points through four games and have forced 11 turnovers.
After traveling to Sycamore this week, they’ll end the season with five straight region opponents four of their final six games on the road.
Page (7-4, 4-1)
The Patriots had the most wins of this group a year ago, but is on pace to surpass that win total. Their one loss came when they played up a classification in a 46-21 loss to Ravenwood.
They’ve done it on both sides of the ball to get to their 4-1 record. Offensively, Page is averaging 36 points per game, led by senior quarterback Jacob Van Landingham (296 yards passing, 251 yards rushing, 9 total TDs) and sophomore running back Bubba Johnson (647 yards rushing, 9 TDs). On the defensive side of the ball, Page is allowing just 16 points per game with five players over 30 tackles already this year and junior Michael Burdick picking off four passes. The Patriots have region foe Summit next up as they look to remain unbeaten in region play.
You can contact Todd Lamberth by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter at Todd_Lamberth.