Line of scrimmage will tell the tale as Golden Falcons play host to Cougars
By Andrew Stevens
Published in Sports on September 7, 2012 1:48 PM
There is a battle that ensues in every football game in a place where holes are opened for running backs and quarterbacks are given time to pass.
It is a place where games are won and lost and where fame and glamor rarely reside.
That place is the line of scrimmage.
The offensive and defensive lines figure to play a predominant role as Charles B. Aycock plays host to Goldsboro tonight at Hardy Talton Stadium. Kickoff is 7:30 p.m.
The Golden Falcons' zone read offense has produced 806 rushing yards and nine touchdowns on the ground in three games. Aycock's offensive line has paved the way for six different ball carriers to reach the end zone and the Golden Falcons are averaging 22 points a game.
Senior quarterback Austin Snowden has demonstrated excellent decision making while executing the zone read. Snowden's ability to read defensive ends and make split-second decisions on whether to keep the ball or hand off to a running back has given opposing defenses one more element of Aycock's offense to account for.
"Anytime you face a quarterback that is a dual-threat that is something you have to be very cognizant of," Cougars' head coach Eric Reid said. "Each individual person on the defense has an assignment and it is important that they stick with their assignment and don't try to do more than what we have asked them to do or that zone read can really hurt us.
"If we can stay disciplined from that standpoint I think we will be all right."
Seven different Golden Falcons carried the ball in last week's 36-7 victory over Greene Central. That depth should be important again tonight as starting tailback Jeremy Hooks remains questionable after sustaining a head injury in a 40-0 loss at Wilson Hunt two weeks ago.
"Our offensive line has to continue to play well and move people off the ball," Aycock head coach Randy Pinkowski said. "The game every week comes down to the offensive line playing well, playing good defense and limiting turnovers."
Once known for its dominant ground attack, Goldsboro (1-1 overall) has rushed for just 176 yards in two games and is averaging fewer than four yards a carry. Rasheed Malette displayed the potential to be the Cougars' go-to back against Eastern Wayne with 100 yards rushing and five touchdowns.
"Our front five is really going to have to protect our quarterback in the passing game and open up some holes," Reid said. "We have worked hard this week to establish a consistent running game to compliment our passing game and hopefully our receivers can get to the point where they are catching the ball on a consistent basis."
Senior quarterback Julius Murphy's chemistry with his wide receivers continues to be a work in progress. Avoiding long-yardage situations on third down and establishing an effective running game to keep the Golden Falcons honest is a key for the Cougars.
"We go where Julius takes us," Reid said. "One thing we don't have to worry about with Julius is him getting rattled. We are more concerned with the people around him and them getting comfortable. If we can have some success early that will help us get into more of a comfort zone."
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