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|CLASS 3A | REGION 1
|HEAD COACH: John Keith
|Oct 23||Alcorn Central*||Away|
NETTLETON, Miss. (WCBI) — “A place that I’ve always looked at and somewhere that could be a long term destination for me and somewhere I could put roots down,” new head football coach John Keith said.
Planting those roots is the plan for John Keith as he leads the Nettleton Tigers into the season. Keith has spent six of the last seven years coaching at Tupelo along with a playoff appearance at Mooreville as the head coach in 2016. Fast forward to 2020, Keith and the team want to take the program up a notch by cleaning up mistakes.
“There were 50/50 games, and we want to try to close in on those games and have them swing our way,” Keith said. “If you get a couple of those, instead of a .500 year, you’re looking at a year where you win eight or nine games. We’re working on building a mentality where we can finish those and take that next step.”
“Last year, we just shot ourselves in the foot, but this year, we’re going to win the games we’re supposed to win,” senior middle linebacker and running back Marcus Thomas said.
Keith has coached at both Amory and Mooreville, so he’s very familiar with the region. He believes if they take care of business they can be in the mix for the crown.
“We can’t beat ourselves,” Keith said. “The tigers aren’t going to beat the tigers. We just got to go week in and week out and put the work in and let that stuff sort itself out. I feel like if we take care of what we need to take care of that when the time comes, we’ll be in the hunt.”
Players like the culture Keith and his staff have established as they prepare for the season.
“They showing us that he’s here for us and that he’s putting in the work as much as we’re putting in the work,” Thomas said. “That’s a good thing that we want to see.”
“They changed my love for the game,” senior defensive end and tight end Parker Flurry said. “I think I’m going to really enjoy it this year. Have fun out there on the field.”
It’s that love and passion for the game and for the town of Nettleton that’s fueling the team.
“Last year, we went 6-6 or 6-7. something like that, that was a big change,” Thomas said. “This year we’re going to make it even bigger because it really means a lot to Nettleton. Everybody came out and came together.”
The Tigers start the season with a home opener against Bruce August 21st.