TRM to play Atmore Friday
Coming off a 21-0 win at Flomaton Friday night in a preseason game, the T.R. Miller Tiger football team will kick off their 2012 season with a game Friday night in Atmore against the Escambia County Blue Devils.
“We did a few good things in the game,” Riggs said of his team’s play against Flomaton. “I thought we made a few good blocks in the game and I was pleased with some of that. We made some good plays on defense and a couple of big plays on defense including the interception and some fourth down stops. Some of that was good.”
While that was good, Riggs said there were some that was not so good.
“We turned the ball over way too much and we didn’t throw and catch the ball efficiently,” Riggs said. “I was not pleased with the play of our linebackers. It was not up to how we are going to need it to be. It was a good game though to get our feet wet a little bit and see some game action before we have to deal with Escambia County.”
Escambia County comes into the game with T.R. Miller after suffering a 37-0 loss to Saraland Friday in a preseason game of their own. But while the Blue Devils lost, they did not have starting quarterback Christopher Johnson, play in the game.
“They are a typical Atmore team that we are used to seeing size-wise and speed,” Riggs said. “They do have the great quarterback and when he is in there, he makes a huge impact. He is not only a great running threat, but he can also throw the ball. That really makes that offense go and when you don’t have that triggerman in there, you have a problem and he makes it go and is really outstanding. They have a big offensive line and some big running backs. The best thing they did the other night without Johnson playing was giving the ball to the big running back and letting him ram people with it.”
On defense, Riggs said it is a typical Blue Devil defense.
“They have big linebackers with two or three big linemen and a lot of speed in the secondary,” Riggs said. “So we have our work cut out for us. They did the same thing in their preseason game last year and then played like all-Americans the night we played them. Our kids and their kids get after each other every year. So none of that makes a difference with what happened in the preseason or last year. It will be a good game. This game always seems to go down to the wire. I anticipate the same thing happening.”
The Blue Devils enter the game under new head coach Lev Holly.
Riggs said preparing for a team in the first game of the season is difficult and even more difficult with a new head coach.
“It makes it harder especially since he was not there in the spring,” Riggs said. “I think it makes it a little more to prepare for but you have all types of preparation methods now days but we will do our best to get prepared. I would just like to see some improvement from our team especially at the linebacker position. I think our linebackers and secondary are going to have a great challenge. If we don’t stop them from running the ball, we are going to have a hard night—especially with their big backs and their quarterback. Offensively, we have to figure out how to block their defense. Usually athletic defenses get off blocks well so we have to maintain our blocks. We have to do our play action passing game which we do and if we fail to do any of that, we will have difficulty winning the game.”
Another factor in the game could be Tropical Storm Isaac.
“I don’t see it having an effect on the game,” Riggs said. “I see if affecting practice. You really just don’t know. I think we will get a few solid days of rain so that affects your ability to practice and others have to deal with it also. But I don’t see it affecting the game.”
Game time is set for 7 p.m. in Atmore.