Skip to main content

Fresh Faces

Oct 12, 2015 03:17PM ● Published by Dia

The Dragons have one of the most inexperienced defenses in the state as they return just one starter from a year ago. But at a tradition-rich program, the mantra is always reload not replace.

Still, with less experience comes the inevitable problem of a lack of depth. Head coach Hal Wasson hopes to find players who can not only make impacts as starters but as key substitutes.

“One of the biggest concerns for us on the defensive side of the ball is depth,” Wasson says. “We have a small senior class. We have to find some depth and have some of these underclassmen step up.”

Southlake Carroll runs a 3-4 odd for- mation, which means the Dragons usually have three down linemen. Wasson says he’s comfortable with six players rotating along the defensive line. Keeping fresh is imperative, especially when facing the usual mammoth offensive lines of Euless Trinity and Coppell.

Wasson likes what he’s seen out of junior Ryan Miller, who made the move from offensive line this season as well as juniors like Jackson Canter and Luke Jeter.

“We’re not really big up front this year, so we’re going to have to use more of a rotation,” Wasson says. “We’re going to play against big, physical teams, so we’re going to need to do that successfully.”

Southlake Carroll gave up just a little more than 21 points per game last sea- son — a good figure given the explosive offenses it faced — thanks in large part to its linebackers. But the group loses all four starters including Jake Copeland, last year’s Defensive Newcomer of the Year.

“We have four new starters, so there are some new faces there,” Wasson says. “Grant McFarlin is doing a good job. He’s a hard-working football player. I like what Grant Phelps and IV Seacat are doing in- side for us. It’s going to take a little time with all the new starters.” 

McFarlin is making the move from run- ning back and will provide some much needed senior leadership.

“It’s awesome. I love it,” McFarlin says. “Anywhere I can get on the field is great. It’s definitely a lot different being on de- fense. But I feel like I got it down. I just want to help the team win, and I feel that we’re in for a great season.”

Perhaps the group with the most po- tential this season is the secondary. Obi Eboh returns at cornerback after notch- ing 52 tackles and 10 pass breakups. Rob- ert Barnes will start at his natural safety position after recording 29 tackles and one interception — he started two games at outside linebacker as a sophomore.

“Obi is our only starter, so he’s the leader of our defense,” Wasson says. “Robert Barnes and Barrett Buck played some last year. We’re expecting good seasons out of them. We have some competition going on back there, so I like what we have in the secondary.”

But if the unit as a whole is going excel, it needs another big sea- son from Eboh. And not just from his play on the field. As the only returning starter, it is imperative for him to help all 10 new starters get acclimated on Friday nights.

“I’m the only returning starter, so I know I have to step up this year,” Eboh says. “I have to help some of these younger guys get ready and get up to speed at this level. We’re going to have some tough road games, so I need to help them grow up.

“We have a lot of potential. It’s up to me to help us live up to it, so we can win another district title.”

The Dragons have one of the most inexperienced defenses in the state as they return just one starter from a year ago. But at a tradition-rich program, the mantra is always reload not replace.

Still, with less experience comes the inevitable problem of a lack of depth. Head coach Hal Wasson hopes to find players who can not only make impacts as starters but as key substitutes.

“One of the biggest concerns for us on the defensive side of the ball is depth,” Wasson says. “We have a small senior class. We have to find some depth and have some of these underclassmen step up.” 

Southlake Carroll runs a 3-4 odd formation, which means the Dragons usually have three down linemen. Wasson says he’s com- fortable with six players rotating along the defensive line. Keeping fresh is imperative, especially when facing the usual mammoth of- fensive lines of Euless Trinity and Coppell.

Wasson likes what he’s seen out of junior Ryan Miller, who made the move from offensive line this season as well as juniors like Jack- son Canter and Luke Jeter.

“We’re not really big up front this year, so we’re going to have to use more of a rotation,” Wasson says. “We’re going to play against big, physical teams, so we’re going to need to do that successfully.”

Southlake Carroll gave up just a little more than 21 points per game last season — a good figure given the explosive offenses it faced — thanks in large part to its linebackers. But the group loses all four starters including Jake Copeland, last year’s Defensive New- comer of the Year.

“We have four new starters, so there are some new faces there,” Wasson says. “Grant McFarlin is doing a good job. He’s a hard-work- ing football player. I like what Grant Phelps and IV Seacat are doing inside for us. It’s going to take a little time with all the new starters.”

McFarlin is making the move from running back and will provide some much needed senior leadership.

“It’s awesome. I love it,” McFarlin says. “Anywhere I can get on the field is great. It’s definitely a lot different being on defense. But I feel like I got it down. I just want to help the team win, and I feel that we’re in for a great season.”

Perhaps the group with the most potential this season is the sec- ondary. Obi Eboh returns at cornerback after notching 52 tackles and 10 pass breakups. Robert Barnes will start at his natural safety position after recording 29 tackles and one interception — he start- ed two games at outside linebacker as a sophomore.

“Obi is our only starter, so he’s the leader of our defense,” Was- son says. “Robert Barnes and Barrett Buck played some last year. We’re expecting good seasons out of them. We have some compe- tition going on back there, so I like what we have in the secondary.”

But if the unit as a whole is going excel, it needs another big sea- son from Eboh. And not just from his play on the field. As the only returning starter, it is imperative for him to help all 10 new starters get acclimated on Friday nights.

“I’m the only returning starter, so I know I have to step up this year,” Eboh says. “I have to help some of these younger guys get ready and get up to speed at this level. We’re going to have some tough road games, so I need to help them grow up.

“We have a lot of potential. It’s up to me to help us live up to it, so we can win another district title.” 

 

 

In Print
  • WHEELS & WARBIRDS

    09/24/2017
    10:00AM — 05:00PM

    Cavanaugh Flight Museum brings the sights and sounds of history to life Saturday and Sunday, Sept...


  • Dallas Decorators Showhouse in Southlake

    09/24/2017
    10:30AM — 05:00PM

    We are in need of volunteer tour guides for morning and afternoon shifts beginning Tuesday, Septe...


  • Exhibit: Seeing is a Nervous Habit

    09/24/2017
    01:00PM — 05:00PM

    A retrospective of Kenda North’s work. The exhibit will be accompanied by a group exhibition of f...


  • WindSync

    09/24/2017
    06:00PM — 07:00PM

    Award winning, national touring chamber ensemble with a refreshing unique style


  • Exhibit: Seeing is a Nervous Habit

    09/28/2017
    10:00AM — 05:00PM

    A retrospective of Kenda North’s work. The exhibit will be accompanied by a group exhibition of f...


  • Dallas Decorators Showhouse in Southlake

    09/28/2017
    10:30AM — 05:00PM

    We are in need of volunteer tour guides for morning and afternoon shifts beginning Tuesday, Septe...


  • SusieCakes Grand Opening Happy Hour

    09/28/2017
    03:00PM — 07:30PM

    Enjoy the grand opening of SusieCakes in Fort Worth with a week of happy hour deals! Monday 9...


  • Dragon Pride 2017 Preview Party

    09/28/2017
    05:30PM — 07:30PM

    You're invited to attend our annual Dragon Pride Preview Party! Join the free festivities as we u...


  • Mama Won't Fly

    09/28/2017
    07:00PM

    On September 28th and 30th Carroll Senior High School theatre will present the outrageously hilar...


Read This Month's Digital Issue
STAY CONNECTED
FOLLOW US ON INSTAGRAM