Callaway senior stands tall
Published 10:27 am Wednesday, August 28, 2019
By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY
On a defense with almost all new starters, Callaway’s coaches are relying heavily on senior linebacker R.J. Williams to lead the way.
So far, so good.
During last week’s season-opening 10-7 loss to Opelika, Williams had a monster game with 15 tackles, including 11 solo stops, and he had one tackle for loss.
“I thought R.J. played a really good ballgame,” said Dusty Hubbard, Callaway’s defensive coordinator. “He was in on a lot of plays.”
Anthony Elliott, a defensive end who played linebacker last season, added 12 tackles, with six solo stops and a fumble recovery.
Charlie Dixon, a linebacker who also took a lot of snaps on offense as a running back, had nine total tackles with six solo stops.
Dixon excelled despite missing some time with an injury, and Hubbard figures his production will increase as his conditioning improves.
Dixon didn’t play the previous week in a preseason game against Starr’s Mill at Callaway Stadium.
“Charlie had been out,” Hubbard said. “He’d been out for a week and a half, so his conditioning wasn’t quite where it needed to be. He didn’t play against Starr’s Mill. He’ll get there. Charlie just hasn’t got a lot of reps. He’ll get better as the season goes along.”
A defense with two returning starters was stingy against Opelika, which scored a touchdown on its opening possession but was limited to a field goal after that.
“I would have liked to have seen us create some more turnovers, and do a better job of getting off the field on third down some,” Hubbard said. “But as far as red-zone defense, we did a good job.”
TANK’S NUMBERS: Cartavious “ Tank” Bigsby, Callaway’s outstanding senior running back, opened his season by running for more than 100 yards in a 10-7 loss to Opelika.
Bigsby ran for 114 yards on 21 attempts with a 1-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter. Bigsby also caught two passes for 25 yards.
Bigsby also had a long run called back because of holding on a play where he ran over and through about six Opelika defenders.
Bigsby did struggle hanging onto the ball with three lost fumbles, which is more than he had in 14 games last season.