County pride on display at 2017 Clayton County Football Media Day By Luke Strickland
RIVERDALE — The 2017 Clayton County Football Media Day took place Wednesday at Drew High School. Coaches and players from all nine county programs spoke about what to expect in the upcoming season.
Drew head coach Dorwyn Lyles led off the event and spoke about the challenging schedule his team will face this season. The Titans will look to return to the state playoffs after missing out in 2016.
Seniors Gary Tyner, Anthony Menchaca, C.J. Davenport, Deriaz Williams and Ezekial Ausar joined Lyles at the event. Lyles spoke highly of those players in terms of being leaders on the field and in the school.
Forest Park High
Martez Edwards participated in his first media day as head coach of the Panthers. He spoke about his plan to turn the program around, starting first and foremost with changing expectations on and off the field.
Edwards said that senior Kendarious Redden and juniors Justin Eboigbe, RayShawn Meiser, Buck Cooper and Jacquez Bailey have helped him acclimate to the program. Those players joined Edwards at media day.
Jonesboro offensive coordinator Nate Wardlaw filled in for head coach Tim Floyd, who was with the rest of the team at a summer camp. Wardlaw introduced seniors Matavion Brooks, Deighton London and Jaaliq Brown, all of which he expects to contribute this season.
Wardlaw, who played alongside North Clayton High head coach Cap Burnett at North Clayton in the early 2000s, also spoke about his desire to see other teams in the county do well.
Head coach Edgar Carson took the podium to introduce several players he expects to lead the Wildcats this season. Seniors Zion Custis, Solomon Lightfoot, Myles Best, Lawrence Terrel and Corintheus Edmonds all accompanied Carson to media day.
Carson capped off his speech by reiterating to those in attendance that quality football is played within the county and that players don’t need to transfer to other parts of the state to get noticed on the recruiting scene.
Head coach Jerome Weaks and the Mustangs are optimistic regarding the 2017 season, and Weaks reiterated that point at media day. Weaks said that the program is moving in the right direction off the field, which will eventually translate to wins on the schedule.
Seniors Hiram James, Brandon Mercer and Fred Wright and juniors Kris Clark and Jamal Hill represented Morrow.
Mount Zion High
The Bulldogs will field a veteran team this season according to head coach Kevin Jones. Mount Zion’s senior class is the first class that Jones has coached for all four years, and Jones noted that some of his players have college offers much earlier than the program has been accustomed to.
Seniors Ramon Hill, Justin Darnell, EJ Burton, Rashad Francois and Earnest Fortson joined Jones at the podium.
Mundy’s Mill High
The Tigers were represented by head coach Dwayne Davis, who spoke about the ups and downs the program experienced in 2016. Davis said that he and his players have learned from those experiences and that the program is excited to begin a new campaign.
Juniors Nick Manson, Kendall Boney, Chase Welch and Marquez Mason and sophomore Raheem Gaines were in attendance for Mundy’s Mill.
North Clayton High
Head coach Cap Burnett is entering his second season in charge of his Alma Mater. He spoke about the pride he felt being able to lead the program to the state playoffs last season, as well as his desire to help Clayton County programs earn respect state-wide.
Seniors Tevin Hull, Keelin Lee and Sundiata Anderson joined Burnett at the event.
Willie Binyard filled in for head coach Terry Herrod at the event. He spoke about how he knew several coaches in attendance, including Mount Zion head coach Kevin Jones, and that he was honored to be able to compete against them.
Seniors Jalen Hughes, Mylen Stallings and LeMarcus Washington and juniors Dante Walker and Jaelyn Lay represented the Raiders.