BY BRANDON SPECK
Marcus Green has gotten the publicity. Rightfully so, the North Pontotoc senior receiver had a great summer and recently committed to play next season at Louisiana-Monroe.
But as Green once alluded to in a tweet about his quarterback, Trey Jolly, there are way more pieces to the Vikings’ puzzle, all of whom will play key roles after the Vikings dropped down to a competitive Division 1-3A.
“Marcus has had a big summer. We’re happy for Marcus,” North Pontotoc coach Brian Sutton said. “But we’ve got Trey Jolly coming back. He did a tremendous job last year, some offensive linemen, some kids that came out in the spring that haven’t been with us.”
Jolly will be a senior. He threw for nearly 2,500 yards and 27 touchdowns last season, 994 and 13 of those to Green. Kenyana Heard returns on the offensive line after he also had a solid summer of camps. Sutton said some new skill guys are going to be able to take some pressure off Green.
Leading tackler Peyton Finch and speedy corner Greg Gambrel return.
“We’ve got a lot of returning starters, quite a few guys that are coming back that are going to be key for us,” Sutton said. “We remind them that if you’re on offense, it takes 11 guys to move the football. If you’re on defense, it takes 11 guys to stop somebody. Most importantly, it takes 55 kids to make us good.”
The Vikings took Saturday off and put on full pads for the first time Monday. On Saturday, they’ll take on Saltillo in the Oxford/Ole Miss Jamboree at 11 a.m. at Vaught-Hemingway Stadium.
North will then have next week to make any necessary changes before opening the season on Aug. 23 at Bruce.
“Saturday for us is another practice day, but it gives us an opportunity to play somebody else and to get a film so we can evaluate some of our positions,” Sutton said.