Millers keep coaching in Southeast family
Lamar, Heidelberg familiar foes
Lamar School and Heidelberg Academy have at the very least one of the longest running rivalries in Mississippi Private School Association football.
The Raiders and Rebels have played each of the last 31 years, once each season that Lamar has played high school football.
The two teams first played in the second week of the 1971 season with Heidelberg winning 28-15. That would become the theme over the history of the series as HA has won 28 times, with the Raiders winning just three.
The last time Lamar beat Heidelberg was 24-0 in 1998, the first game coached by former Raider head man Wyatt Rogers.
Heidelberg won the first 11 games between the two schools, with Lamar winning in 1982 and 1983. The Rebels then won 14 straight times before the Rogers' lead victory in 1998.
In another oddity to the series, all three Lamar wins have come by shut out.
Eyes for the ball
Kemper County's Eric Hubbard, a 5-foot-10, 266-pound senior lineman, recovered seven fumbles in 2001.
West Lauderdale's Tyler Herrington, a 6-foot, 170-pound senior, had four fumble recoveries.
You can't touch this
Wayne Academy and Heidelberg Academy continued their dominating ways in MPSA Division 3-A this year.
The only team to beat either of those teams in league play in recent years has been each other.
This year Sylva-Bay Academy joined in the mix, with its only two league losses being to Heidelberg and Wayne, with the Saints only falling to the Jaguars 21-15.
But the rest of the league was nowhere close to the top three.
If you combined the total points scored by all three of the other teams in the six-team league Kemper Academy, Central Academy and Newton County Academy it would still not be as many as any of the top three.
Wayne has scored 370 in 13 games with one more to go, while Heidelberg hung up 351 points in 11 games and SBA notched 295 points in 10 games. Kemper, Central and Newton combined for 276 points in 30 games.
Keeping down the scoring
Despite winning the first dozen football games they played this year on the way to a 12-1 record, the Cougars of Newton County High School only posted one shutout all season. That came against Forest (35-0) in the season opener.
But the defense was consistent. The most points NCHS allowed all year was the 19 to Collins it gave up in Friday night's 19-12 playoff loss.
For the year the Cougars gave up only 141 points in 13 games for an average of 10.8 points per game.
Louisiana vs. Mississippi
Two of the four MPSA finals will match Louisiana-based schools against Mississippi teams.
In AA, Oak Forest of Amite, La., will face Magnolia Heights of Senatobia on Thursday night at 7 p.m. at Robinson-Hale Stadium. Oak Forest is 11-1 while Magnolia Heights is 10-2.
In AAA, Silliman Institute of Clinton, La., (12-0) will take on North Delta School (10-3). North Delta School is based in Batesville.
North Delta School, by the way, is coached by legendary head man Willis Wright. Wright won a state title at Starkville High School and also led Greenville, Ala., to the 5A title. He also helped resurrect a moribund program at South Panola.
The only all-Mississippi finals are in Class A and AAAA. Wayne Academy battles Trinity of Natchez on Thursday at 1 p.m.
Both schools, ironically, had to beat out of state teams in order to reach the finals.
Trinity knocked off three Louisiana schools in succession including River Oaks (14-12), Claiborne (29-0), and Glenbrook (28-21). The last game with Glenbrook was played in Minden, La.
Wayne, meanwhile, had to beat a 10-1 West Memphis, Ark., (32-6) team to reach the North State final against DeSoto School. They then beat DeSoto out of West Helena, Ark., 14-7 last Friday in Waynesboro.
Of course, the AAAA final is actually an all-Jackson affair matching Jackson Academy against Prep. This is the fourth time they've played each for a state title. Just two weeks ago in the regular season finale, Prep pulled out a 21-20 win.
Ridley a no show
Trinity's outstanding quarterback in Chad Ridley was a no-show at the press conference. The senior has rushed for 1,240 yards and 19 touchdowns while passing for 1,016 yards and 14 TDs. He's also returned four kickoffs, two punts and two interceptions for scores.
Trinity Head Coach David King gave this statement for Ridley's absence.
The only player that King brought was senior defensive linemen Jon Borum who ranks sixth on the team in tackles with 55 stops.