Quarterbacks excel for Braves, Cavaliers

Published 11:52 pm Thursday, October 12, 2017

By Kevin Eckleberry


HOGANSVILLE – There will be two quarterbacks on the field tonight in Franklin.

One of them, Heard County’s Emory Jones, is among the most heavily-recruited players in the country, and he has verbally committed to Ohio State.

The other quarterback, Callaway’s Kedrick Ramsey, received his first college offer earlier this week, and it was from Georgetown College, a small school in Kentucky.

While Jones is the player everyone knows, and who has offers from just about every big-time program in the country, the “other” quarterback in tonight’s game is getting it done as well.

Before this season, Ramsey was primarily a defensive player, although he had taken the occasional snap at quarterback.

Ramsey has been ensconced as the starter since the preseason game against Northside-Columbus, and he has thrived.

While the Cavaliers are primarily a running team, they’ve made a lot of big plays in the passing game.

Ramsey is averaging about 100 passing yards per game, and he has thrown five touchdown passes, most of them from long distance.

Ramsey averages nearly 20 yards a completion, so when he throws the ball, it oftentimes results in a big play.

Ramsey has also run for more than 100 yards, and he has four touchdowns on the ground.

Beyond the numbers, Callaway head coach Pete Wiggins said Ramsey has provided the sort of leadership that is critical from someone playing that position.

“Kedrick Ramsey gets better every week,” Wiggins said. “His leadership is really special, and he develops more and more each week. I’m really proud of him.”

Before the season, Ramsey was one of a handful of players vying to be the quarterback.

Ramsey won the job, and he has held onto it with some outstanding play.

“I feel pretty good,” Ramsey said. “From the first game to this game, I get more comfortable every week.”

At Heard County, Jones has been the man at quarterback for years, and he has enjoyed a remarkable high-school career, although he has yet to beat Callaway.

Last year, Jones didn’t get much of a chance to show what he could do against Callaway.

Jones suffered an injury in the first quarter, and he didn’t play again.

Without Jones, Heard County struggled offensively, and it lost to Callaway 24-14.

This season, Jones has shown the kind of form that made him such an elite recruit, and he’ll be rested and ready to go tonight since Heard County has had two straight off weeks.

Callaway head coach Pete Wiggins calls Jones “one of the best players in the country.”

“He’s the leader of their offense, and he’s a dynamic player on the field that can do so many things,” Wiggins added.

While Jones is billed as a dual-threat quarterback, Heard County head coach Tim Barron sees him more as a passer than a runner.

“A lot of people across the country categorize him as a dual threat, but to me he’s a pro-set pocket passer who happens to be a great athlete,” Barron said. “He can pick up first downs with his legs if he needs to, but when you watch him throw, the ball comes out different than most. He spins it well and in the screen game, he gets the receiver the ball with time to make things happen. It gets there in a hurry. He’s got extraordinary arm strength.”

TOUCHDOWN TELY: Tely Fanning, a junior linebacker for the Callaway Cavaliers, scored his second career touchdown in last week’s win over Lamar County.

Jonathan Leonard tipped a pass, and Fanning caught the ball and raced 30 yards for the touchdown.

Fanning he received some great blocking from his teammates on the defensive side of the ball.

“I know my boys, they were going to block for me, Kobe Jackson, Cartavious Bigsby,” Fanning said. “They blocked and I saw the end zone, so I just dove for it.”

That Fanning is even on a football field is an accomplishment

Fanning has undergone two knee surgeries for torn ACLs, but he never considering giving up the sport he loves.

“I just bounced back and came back harder (after the surgeries),” Fanning said.

WELCOME BACK: After missing two games with an injury, Callaway defensive lineman Lichon Terrell was back on the field last week against Lamar County.

Terrell, who has committed to Western Kentucky, was glad to be back on the field with his teammates.

“It was very hard (sitting out),” Terrell said. “I love this team, and watching from the sideline with regular clothes on, it doesn’t feel good.”

PLENTY OF REST: Heard County will be as rested as any team in the state when it takes the field tonight.

Heard County hasn’t played since Sept. 22 when it beat Temple, and that was three weeks ago.

SERIES RECORD: This will be the 20th time Callaway and Heard County have played.

Callaway has won the past four meetings, giving it a 12-7 edge in the series.