#HSFT21 Stop #19 — Starkville Academy Volunteers

HEAD COACH: Chase Nicholson
Aug 20 Jackson Academy Away
Aug 27 Lamar School Home
Sept 3 Leake Academy Home
Sept 10 French Camp Away
Sept 17 Heritage Academy Away
Sept 24 Winston Academy Home
Oct 1 Magnolia Heights Home
Oct 8 Pillow Academy Away
Oct 15 Bayou Academy Away
Oct 22 Washington School Home


STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI) — “That’s the legacy, and that’s the expectation. To get to the playoffs, give yourself a chance and go further,” Starkville Academy head coach Chase Nicholson said.

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For the Starkville Academy Volunteers, making the playoffs is just the floor. However, winning a state championship — that’s the ceiling.

Coming off an appearance in the second round of the MAIS 5A playoffs in 2020, the Volunteers remain unsatisfied.

Starkville Academy now looks to take another shot at picking up a state title with a new season on the horizon.

“They know what it takes,” Nicholson said. “They’re trying to find out what it takes to make that next step. Not just make the playoffs, but make it back to the championship. This senior group, as sophomores, played for a state championship. So they know what it takes and what it tastes like. That’s what makes it fun when you have that group and that opportunity to go out there and do that.”

“Obviously a state championship is always the goal,” senior quarterback Randall Futral said. “Have a really good year and fun. I know it’s going to be a lot of fun because the last couple of years have.”

The Volunteers bring a roster full of experience and talent into the 2021 season. Coach Nicholson says this team’s 47 players is one of the biggest in over five years.

“A lot of leadership coming back. A lot of experience coming back. A lot of juniors who were sophomores and played a lot last year. We’re really excited about our team and what they look like and the make-up of them,” Nicholson said.

Like every year, Starkville Academy focuses on having a strong defense and aggressive identity. That’s something the Volunteers will look to return this season.

“We’re going to be aggressive on defense. We’re going to be a disciplined football team and our coaches are going to coach hard and try to get these guys in the best situation they possible can. We won’t be perfect. We will make mistakes. We all will, but we will continue to get better every single day, be a family, work hard and play hard every single day,” Nicholson said.

“We’re just trying to put more pressure on eachother,” senior OL/DL Charlie Cox said. “Pressure makes diamonds so the more we train and practice it will be better.”

The season begins for Starkville Academy on the road at Jackson Academy, August 20th.

“Play like we did last year thinking it was the last time we ever played, but not play like its COVID. Play like it’s a regular season, like we’re supposed to. Play Starkville Academy style football,” Nicholson said.