Mize, Dexter 1-2 in Region 4-1A poll
It’s going to be a dog fight. That’s what many Region 4-1Acoaches report when predicting preseason favorites and order offinish, in The Daily Leader’s Region 4-1A PreseasonPoll.
Both the Mize Bulldogs and the Dexter Bulldogs were chosen theoverwhelming favorites in the poll and the teams to beat in theregion race.
Taking first place with 80 overall votes on eight first place,was defending class 1A state champion Mize. The Bulldogs went 12-2last year en route to claiming the title, and head coach KennyRobinson believes that this year’s Bulldogs have a lot to learnbefore even thinking about finishing number one.
“It’s nice to be picked with such an honor so early,” saidRobinson. “But, I’d rather be number one at the end of the seasonthan at the beginning.”
When Robinson was asked for his preseason number one, he pointedto the poll’s second place team Dexter as the team to beat.
“Dexter always returns a good product,” added Robinson. “CoachRandy Sumrall always does a good job with them.”
Dexter placed second overall in the poll with a close 74 votes.With only two first place votes the Bulldogs got the runner’s upstatus with kickoff less than four weeks away.
Placing third were the tough and rough Bobcats of Bogue Chitto.The Bobcats under the direction of fourth year coach Carl Colegained 58 votes overall. Although his team was picked third, Coleexpects a strong non region schedule to help his team beforeentering the heart of regional play.
“We play Class 3A Franklin County and Class 2A Richton early,”said Cole. “Those two games will help us get a better feel, beforeentering region play.”
Moving on down the prediction ladder are the Enterprise YellowJackets with 50 votes. The Yellow Jackets return two out standingseniors in running backs Shermain Vaughn and Bobby Smith. Vaughnrushed for 1,000 yards last season as a junior, Smith broke the1,000 mark his sophomore year.
In fifth place the Green Wave of Natchez Cathedral rises as theymoved down from the once powerful Division 6-2A to a new, moreaggressive Region 4-1A.
“The new region is good in some ways and bad in others,” saidveteran Green Wave coach Ken Beasley. “The competition level andscheduling are great. But the traveling involved is the worstpart.”
Beasley also, thinks that his team’s move down from 2A to 1Awill only improve his teams chances of reaching the playoffs.
“Whenever you move down a class, it should help.” added Beasley.”We ought to have a better chance at making the playoffs now sincefour teams can qualify.”
Rounding out the region are St. Aloysius and Stringer with 37votes apiece, Salem with 31, MT. Olive with 27, and West Lincolnwith nine. The Bears will be breaking in a new coach in former LoydStar vet Roe Burns. Burns faces a major task of building the WestLincoln program from ground up, as he looks for improvement hisfirst year at the helm of the fourth – year program.
Overall, Region 4-1A will have it’s share of wild animalsroaming around from Bobcats to Bears to Bulldogs it should be aninteresting year.
THE DAILY LEADER’S
Natchez Cathedral 49