PLAYERS TO WATCH:
For the seventh time in the last eight weeks, Godby will step on another bus. The road trips don't seem to bother them though as the Cougars are averaging nearly 442 yards and 42 points a game. A big reason why Godby has made it this far maybe because of how balanced they are in their spread formation with 3653 rushing and 2436 passing. Try to stop Kentucky commit RB Khalid Thomas (1407 yards, 16 TD) and the Cougars running behind Ben Lyda (48 pancakes) will hit you with QB JT Bradwell (151 of 255 for 2317 yards, 19 TD), Kenny Young(702 yards, 13 TD) and Tim Longmire (479 rushing, 468 receiving, 18 TD) or burn you deep with receivers Wade Phillip ( 18.5 y.p.c., 6 TD), Earl Calloway (14.32 y.p.c., 7 TD) or Longmire (14.63 y.p.c., 8TD).
A stingy defense has only gotten better in the playoffs allowing just 15.3 points per game, led by linebackers Jacob Pugh (87 tackles, 5 sacks), Bud McDonald (82 tackles), Luke Helms (80 tackles), Corey Pressley ( 56 tackles, 7 sacks) and Markise McQueen (31 tackles, 4 sacks).
For the Cougars sake, let's hope the game doesn't come down to the kicking game as kicker Tryton Swigart Johnson has made just 2 of 3 field goal attempts, longest of 35 yards on the season; while Logan Roberts has converted 21 of 24 point after attempts.
One thing that could play a huge factor in this game is turnovers something the Cougars don't seem to do. Godby has turned the ball over just 13 times (7 interceptions, 6 fumbles), for an average of just one turnover a game….Goby is seeking its fourth overall state title after winning previous titles in 1976 defeating Miami Carol City 21-15, in 1986 beating Clewiston 20-0 and in 1987 beating Ely 31-3.
The Indians balanced spread offense (2,337 rushing, 2,178 rushing) features QB Tshumbi Johnson (100 for 151 for 1574 yards, 15 TD), RB D'ernest Johnson (1037 yards on 201 carries, 11 TD) and receiver JC Jackson (756 yards on 39 catches, 19.38 y.p.c., 7 TD). Johnson is also just as lethal on the ground as he is through the air with 461 yards rushing and 7 touchdowns. Jacky Marcellus (10.04 y.p.c.), Jummy Victorin (18.63 y.p.c.) and Xavier Richardson (15.05 y.p.c.) are other playmakers to keep an eye on.
The Indians defense is suspect against the rush giving up 2,466 yards on the ground while shutting down teams passing games allowing just 946 yards through the air. A defense led by linebacker Mackenro Alexander (136 tackles, 4.5 sacks), nose guard Deandrin Senat (83 tackles, 3 sacks), linebacker Jean Borgela (76 tackles, 2.5 sacks), lineman Jimmy Bayes (46 tackles, 7.5 sacks), free safety Jevon Alberique (66 tackles) and lineman Jason Cede (54 tackles, 5 sacks) will have their hands full with Cougars quarterback JT Bradwell.
Jesus Velaco handles both kicking duties and has successfully made 47 of 49 point after attempts, while converting just 6 of 12 field goals, longest of 26 yards.
A major factor likely to come in play in this game is turnovers, the Indians have committed 32 turnovers (11 interception, 21 fumbles) on the season, averaging nearly 2.5 a game…Immokalee is seeking its second state title after winning its first ever state title back in 2004 with a 17-15 win over Madison County.. JC Jackson father Chris played for the Indians in the mid 1990's and was a teammate with Edgerrin Jame. Mackensie Alexander has been selected to play in the US Army All-American game in St. Antonio, Texas. Mackenro Alexander holds the school record for defensive touchdowns in a season with four this year, while teammates T'shumbi Johnson and JC Jackson hold school records in passing and receiving respectively.
Experience tells us the edge may go to Godby, as just four years ago the Cougars were in the Citrus Bowl on the way to a state runner-up finish losing a 7-6 nail bitter to state power Cocoa. Immokalee is turnover prone and that could play a huge factor in the game, too many costly turnovers could be fatal. I've been saying since the season started the winner of Wakulla/Godby would be the favorite to win the 5A State title and I'm sticking with it.
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