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Sunday, Sep. 21, 2014

Sikeston football team aims for district title

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Farmington's offense presents unseen problems

sd_sports@yahoo.com

FARMINGTON -- Although the Sikeston Bulldogs proved it's defense is still as stingy as ever last week, tonight's game against the Farmington Knights presents a problem for that same defense not yet seen.

The no-huddle, spread offense captained by the dual-threat that is Farmington quarterback Zach Hibbits, is a different animal compared to the nine other offenses the Bulldogs have faced this season.

"We haven't seen this kind of an offense that presents the kinds of problems that they present with the talent they have," Sikeston head coach Kent Gibbs said. "With Farmington, they throw it around and their receivers are pretty good.

"With no disrespect to anybody we've played, they just present a little bit more of a problem or a bigger problem than what we've seen in the past."

With no fear of throwing on any down, Farmington features Hibbits, who is as accurate as they come, senior receiver Jonathon Bird, receiver Chase Busenbark and another receiver Doug Warren.

Connor Davault, Brett Bader, Roper Garrett as well as Hibbits all get in on the running game as well. It could be the closest thing the Bulldogs have come to a shootout in quite some time.

"It's going to be real hard to slow (Hibbits) down," Gibbs said. "They move the ball differently than what they've seen. They're going to present some problems and, to be real honest about it, they're going to be in a position to score some points.

"It's one of those things where we have to do the best we can to rally to the football and make plays. They're going to play pitch and catch."

Defending such an offense will rely on several different looks as far as Sikeston's defense is concerned, according to Gibbs.

"Their offense is predicated on doing something your not doing," said Gibbs. "They'll look to the sideline and change the play at the line of scrimmage. For me to say we're going to blitz, we're going to play soft, we're going to play a cover two or a cover three, all of that would be correct.

"I don't think you can do one thing. You have to give them different looks."

Although it's an attack they haven't seen before, the Bulldogs may be comforted in the fact that they held one of the SEMO Conference's top offenses to less than 100 yards last week against Cape Central, who was a team that averaged well over 300 yards per game beforehand.

It will definitely give Gibbs and fans alike a chance to see just how good their Bulldog defense can be.

"It's a wide open offense," said Gibbs. "You kind of see how good you can be if you can play a true run game one week and then turn around and play a good passing team the next, and if you've done well on both of those, your defense must be pretty good. But, we've yet to see that."

"Our deal is, know your assignments, know where your supposed to be in the scheme of things in whatever coverage we're in and make plays once your there."

With a potential shootout looming, Sikeston's offense will prove to be just as important as those on the other side.

The Bulldogs are no strangers to the end zone either as they average over 340 yards per game.

"You've got to be sharp on offense," Gibbs said. "You've got a threat of those guys scoring pretty much at will, so your going to have to match their scoring and hope your defense can get a stop or two."

The Bulldogs, who have already clinched a playoff spot with their 21-0 win over Cape Central last week, also have the potential to be outright district and conference champions on their side. With a win over Farmington, Sikeston will complete that feat two years in a row. They will also be 10-0 for the second straight year.

"I think our kids want to be that 10-0 like we were last year," said Gibbs. "They want to win that out-right conference and district championship. They've not even brought up that we've qualified for the playoffs. It's been more, we need to beat these guys and do what we need to do.

"I would be surprised if we have a let down."

They also know that a win over the 7-2 Knights assure them home field advantage in their first two playoff games. Which could result in another matchup against the Tigers.

"We're looking forward to it and I hope we play a good game," Gibbs said. "Would sure like to be at home for our first two playoff games. Our kids understand what's at stake and I think we'll be ready to go."