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Wolves to be a force on gridiron

By John Miller, 08/5/22 4:23 PM

PRESCOTT – Friday morning was media day for the Curley Wolves, Curley Cubs and junior and senior cheerleaders.

The players suited up in full uniform in the sweltering heat and humidity to have their pictures taken. This year’s Curley Wolf coaches are excited about the team, which has around 50 players suiting up.

On Thursday, Head Coach Brian Glass talked about the upcoming season, saying the Wolves will open their 2022 campaign ranked No. 1 in AAA and plan to be there when the season ends in December.

To no one’s surprise, the Wolves will operate from a 4-3 multiple defense and multiple offense, mostly running out of the spread. Sure, the Wolves lost some key players to graduation last year, but the team has reloaded.

Defensively, Glass said the Wolves will use expanded fronts and stunts to keep opposing offenses off balance. Offensively, he continued, the Wolves will be a fast-paced group getting to the line and snapping the ball as soon as possible. This doesn’t allow opposing defenses to get set or read the offensive set, and it also allows Prescott to control the clock, something Glass wants to do as much as possible.

The Wolves return four starters from last year’s defense and five on offense. This means plenty of experience on both sides of the ball. However, Glass said there are holes to fill on the offensive and defensive lines, but these questions are being answered. “We’re starting to look good. We’ll be quick, but undersized.” On the other hand, the Wolves will be taller than usual, with the defensive line ranging between 6-2 and 6-4, which will make it tough for quarterbacks wearing different color helmets to throw over. Anchoring the front line will be Rocco Patrick at 6-2, 250, who will also play right tackle, along with Avery Hubbard,who returns on offense at center. Caden Dice, Glass said, will start at left tackle, and Rocco Loe is being looked at for the line as well. Joe Patrick is a big kid will will play also see time at left tackle. Takayden McKillion, he continued, will also play some at left tackle as a sophomore. Other sophs who will see action will be Latavion Lofton, Gavin York and Zander Carter. All, Glass said, have potential and should be able to contribute.

Offensively, Carston Poole returns for his senior year under center. Glasss said Poole led the AAA in passing last year and has added 25 pounds of muscle this year and has a stronger arm. Behind Poole will be Travion Dickens at running back along with Eric Grigsby and Branen Bradley, who will also see time as a slot receiver. Poole will have an easier time going to the air this year as he has a set of tall receivers to throw to. P.J. Gulley, Jaylen Johnson, D’Wayne White and Jaylen Young, Glass said, are all tall at 6-3 and 6-4. J.K. Jones and Tiqyan Box will also see action as running backs. Pierce Yates will back Pool up under center, along with DeCari Prater.

Others on the defensive line will be Jamarion Burton and Rasheed Muhammad at defensive end. Marshawn Raft, Wuenton Nolen and Rocco Patrick will anchor the interior defensive line. Glass said Patrick benches 400 pounds, which will make it tough for offensive linemen to keep him out of the backfield. Pittman, Hubbard and Dice will also play some on defense. Tidorian Thompson will be the middle linebacker and fullback, with Talen Smith and Yates being outside linebackers. Travion Dickens will help out at linebacker as well. The secondary features Jerry Glass and Armani Tidwell at the corners with Rashawn Bell and J.K. Jones at safety, with P.J. Gulley.

John Rabadan returns as the kicker, while Grigsby will be the punter with Jaylen Johnson. Hubbard will be the deep snapper for punts with Patrick the short snapper. Spencer Hubbard will be the holder on extra points.

In talking about the schedule, Glass said Prescott will open at War Memorial on Aug. 23 against the Bismarck Lions. He said this should be a good game as the Lions played the Wolves tough in the playoffs, before falling 28-14. Fordyce, he said, is always a tough game for the Wolves and Hope should be improved. The Bobcats will be the first home game for Prescott. Conference play will open with Prescott heading to Gurdon to play the G-Devils, in a contest with a long, heated history as these teams have been opponents both in and out of conference. Glass added Junction City should also be a tough game. The game he’s most looking forward to, though is the Oct. 14 game when Prescott heads to Homer, La. Glass said Homer won the Class A State Title in Louisiana last year and is expected to vie for it again this season. From there the Wolves will host Smackover, another team that doesn’t care for Prescott. Theoretically, the season will end with Horatio, but these teams haven’t been able to play for the last two years because of COVID-19 issues.

This year’s coaching staff sees Jason Patrick as assistant head coach and defensive coordinator; Taylor Wood as co-defensive coordinator and junior high coach; Davion Williams at offensive coordinator; Jake Norwood as co-offensive coordinator; Gabe Morman as special teams and offensive line coach; Quentin Thornton at offensive and defensive line coach; Khalid Stewart as running back and linebacker coach; Tim Loe as linebacker coach; Glass and Wood will be quarterback coach; Patrick will coach linebackers, with Williams coaching wide receivers and the secondary. Norwood will also coach the offensive and defensive line; with Morman also coaching the defensive line. “We have a good staff,” Glass said, “it’s unbelievable.”