The Brookfield football team has a date with Macon at on Friday night, and reason to be optimistic. Though the Bulldogs enter their homecoming game with a 2-4 record, Macon is also experiencing some growing pains, and the Tigers will roll into Burlington Field sporting a 3-3 record of their own.
Expect Macon to run a 4-3 set as its predominant look defensively, with a five down-linemen, two-linebacker scheme sprinkled throughout should the Bulldogs' pass game become sparse or inconsistent.
The Macon side has plenty of undeniable talent, but Brookfield coach Scott Stevens believes that his Bulldogs can mitigate their opposition's weapons if they play up to snuff and continue to progress.
Macon's offense harbors a borderline-elite running back, junior Kevin Edwards, who will enter Friday's game with an average of eight yards per carry on 16 attempts per game. Quarterback Nash Waller also presents a ground threat, coming into Burlington Field averaging 5.8 yards per carry on 69 attempts.
"Edwards is their best ball carrier, hands down, but they have two ball carriers," Stevens admitted. "If you try to take away one, they complement each other. We have to make sure we realize that they'll spread the field toward the sidelines, one way or the other, and we have to make sure our linebackers recognize that."
Macon also has a bonafide stud in the trenches in two-way tackle Jeffrey Smoot.
Smoot comes into the game with a team-high 48 tackles, four of them for loss.
"(Smoot) is a really good player, other coaches said he might have even been their best player on defense last year as a junior," Stevens said. "It's going to be a big battle this week between him and Brooks Baker, they wrestle against each other and have a little rivalry going along with each other, which is always great in a football game. I'm excited for them to line up across from one another and see really who the best player is.
"We made a huge step forward against Monroe City last Friday, and last three weeks we've been able to push some guys around. We're getting better every single week, and it's homecoming this week. It'll be a great atmosphere to play in."