Last week, the first-year Vikings head coach said he was really impressed with this year’s Itawamba AHS team and compared them to some of the heavyweights in Mississippi.
He echoed those same sentiments over the phone Wednesday night.
"They're a very hard football team to figure out how to defend," Plummer said. "They're one of the best football teams I've seen in a long time."
But as Pontotoc head coach Charlie Dampeer pointed out on a call-in radio show, winning all of your non-division games to start the season is irrelevant once division play begins.
“He said it doesn’t matter if you’re 5-0 or 0-5 right now,” said Itawamba head coach Jamie Mitchell, who was listening at the time.
Heading into tonight’s Division 1-4A opener at North Pontotoc, Itawamba is 5-0 and ranked third in the Daily Journal’s large schools rankings. The Indians have outscored their opponents 170-67.
“That matters absolutely none,” Mitchell said on Wednesday. “The first thing you want to do is secure a playoff spot.
“Then you want to earn a home-field spot.”
Tonight's game versus Itawamba will be the first for North Pontotoc as a member of Division 1-4A.
Last year they competed in Division 1-3A.
With that being said, North Pontotoc is off to a 5-0 start and have outscored their opponents 153-95.
“They are a good team and they got two weeks to prepare for this,” Mitchell said.
Smithville at Vardaman
After nearly two weeks of constant rain, Vardaman head football coach Justin Hollis was glad to be finally cutting the grass of his team’s field on Wednesday.
Tonight, his team will be taking on Smithville there in a clash of Division 1-1A titans. Vardaman is ranked third in the Daily Journal’s small-schools rankings, while the Seminoles are ranked fourth.
“Vardaman has always had a good tradition, and so do we,” said Smithville head coach Bubba Tacker. “This game ought to be a good atmosphere.”
Vardaman is off to a 3-1 start (1-0 in division), with its only loss coming at the hands of Calhoun City. Meanwhile, Smithville is off to a 4-0 start (1-0 in division).
“We both have a shot at winning the division,” Tacker said. “The winner gets a leg up in the division.”
As the Seminoles will have to contain Vardaman’s spread offense if they want to win, the Rams will likewise have to limit the Freemans from making huge, game-changing plays.
Quarterback Antwune Freeman has completed 11 of 29 passes for 219 yards, 3 touchdowns and one interception. He has rushed 60 times for 463 yards and 8 TDs.
His brother and backfield mate, Datrune, has rushed 58 times for 438 yards and 3 TDs.
“They’re both really good athletes,” Tacker said. “They got a good line blocking in front of them. They can break a game loose at any time.”