Rosewood offense finding its groove
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on November 14, 2012 1:48 PM
Their names don't get called out over the PA system, aren't in a box score and not common knowledge to the casual fan, but the impact offensive linemen make on a football game is truly immeasurable.
Rosewood can attest to the value of a reliable, consistent offensive line.
Strong tackle Fouad Ismail, strong guard Brent Breedlove, center Joe Radford, weak guard Josh Clark and weak tackle Tyree Chavious, have paved the way for Rosewood (5-7 overall) to rush for more than 2,800 yards and 31 touchdowns this season.
"A lot of them have a lot of varsity experience and one of the biggest things is their understanding of our running scheme," Eagles' head coach Robert Britt said. "They do a good job of making the correct blocking calls once the defense is lined up. Being able to take the right steps to get on their blocks is a big part of their success as well."
Senior tight ends Andrew Henn and Jacob Guthrie have combined with an offensive line compromised of juniors and seniors. Chavious is the lone sophomore.
The group has helped a young backfield blossom as the season has progressed. Senior tailback Josh Davis was the only returner in the backfield, while junior quarterback Jacob Sasser and freshman fullback Spencer Garrison are both first-year starters.
Garrison, an aggressive, hard-nosed runner, has thrived while running between the tackles behind a physical offensive line. He has rushed for more than 1,000 yards and has scored 13 touchdowns.
Davis, a speedy back with the ability to make defenders miss has benefited from his offensive line's ability to get the edge and engage blockers. He has gained nearly 1,000 yards on the ground to go with 10 touchdowns.
Sasser gained confidence each week behind an offensive line that has provided him ample time to find open receivers while keeping defenses honest in Rosewood's play-action passing game. Sasser has thrown for 575 yards and six touchdowns with just two interceptions.
"We try to call plays that compliment our different backs," Britt said. "Spencer does a good job of getting behind the offensive line and letting the blocks set up. Josh is so quick that sometimes he gets in front of his blockers. We try to call plays to get him out on the perimeter.
"With Josh they have to be a little quicker to get out there and get initiated on a block."
The Eagles have won four of their past five games.
During that stretch, Rosewood's offensive line has demonstrated the focus and conditioning necessary to avoid penalties and sustain long drives. Those long drives have typically resulted in valuable points while keeping opposing offenses off the field.
"One thing we have done a good job of during this stretch is our guys haven't jumped offsides and we haven't had many holding penalties," Britt said. "Early in the season we would have a drive going and shoot ourselves in the foot with a penalty. Lately, we haven't had too many of those penalties, and that is a result of the confidence and focus the guys are playing with."
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