Iota opens season at Oberlin

IOTA – Last season, the Iota Bulldogs faced off with the Oberlin Tigers in Week Five where the Bulldogs their first win of the season.

Iota hopes history repeats itself this season in Week One when the Tigers host the Bulldogs Friday, Sept. 6, beginning at 7 p.m.

“We had a little success last year against Oberlin over at our place,” said Neal Legé, Iota Bulldogs head coach.

Iota’s 2012 match up against Oberlin was held at Bulldog Stadium.

A different look than what Iota has seen for the past two weeks, the run-heavy Tigers will present different challenges for the Bulldogs this week.

“They’re physical up front,” said Legé. “’They run the ball well, do a good job with their play-action pass. We’ll have to do a better job.

“They pose different problems than what we have seen thus far.”

For that to happen, the gameplan is simple. Iota must control the ball on offense and play better on defense, the two biggest focuses of Legé, his coaching staff and his team this week.

“We have to do a better job on defense,” said Legé. “Offensively, we saw a lot of positives.

“That’s where we started [Monday].”

Offensively, Iota has a great starting point after a strong showing in the Acadia Parish High Schools Football Jamboree last Thursday against the Rayne Wolves. The Bulldogs held the ball for 22:32 of the 30 minute game and racked up 239 yards. That good play and ball control has to continue for Iota this season, but especially early in the year.

“In the second half of the jamboree against Rayne, I thought we did a real good job of controlling tempo and keeping the ball out of their hands,” said Legé. “We were able to grind it out and that’s what you want at a jamboree, you want to see where you are most effective and build from there.”

The Bulldogs will be without Adam Ardoin, who had 16 yards on his six carries during the jamboree, as a slight shoulder separation has the running back sideline for several weeks now, meaning the load will fall to Tyler Prejean, Nick Sloane and Michael Thevis. The trio combined for 148 yards on 30 carries against Rayne.

Defensively, Iota must play better, according to Legé, starting with better tackling.

“We’ll have to do a better job defensively than we did in the jamboree,” he said. “We had a lot of missed tackles, took bad angles to the ball, a lot of which we can correct, but we just have to do a better job tackling.

“Rayne and their speed are a different thing. Speed is going to cause us problems, but when you are taking bad angles and tackling poorly, it just compounds everything.”

In their game last season, Oberlin gained 282 yards of total offense. The Bulldogs will once again have to contain the Tigers, who return a lot on both sides of the ball, including playmakers.

“There a seasoned ball club this year; they got a lot of their skill players back from last year,” said Legé. “They’ve looked real good so far in their scrimmages and last week in their jamboree.”

What will help the Bulldogs is the return of All-District defensive end Jarrette Fontenot, who suffered a torn ACL last season. During fall camp, Legé was concerned that Fontenot would not return until about Week Three, but Fontenot began practicing again Monday and Legé says he will return ahead of schedule.

“He’s cleared, so he will be playing this week and we’re happy about that,” he said.

Notable returns for Oberlin are linebacker Lance Frank, receiver/defensive end Jonus Godeau and running back Austin Darbonne. Darbonne was the leading offensive producer in the Tigers and Bulldogs clash last season, going 14 for 82 yards and a touchdown on the ground as well as three receptions for 59 yards.

But the Bulldogs will also have to contend not only with Oberlin’s offensive skill players, but its hard-nosed defense that also has a notable returning cast.

“They got a bunch of those guys returning from last year and they run to the ball well,” said Legé.IOTA – Last season, the Iota Bulldogs faced off with the Oberlin Tigers in Week Five and gave the Bulldogs their first win of the season.

Iota hopes history repeats itself this season in Week One when the Tigers host the Bulldogs Friday, Sept. 6, beginning at 7 p.m.

“We had a little success last year against Oberlin over at our place,” said Neal Legé, Iota Bulldogs head coach.

Iota’s 2012 match up against Oberlin was held at Bulldog Stadium.

A different look than what Iota has seen for the past two weeks, the run-heavy Tigers will present different challenges for the Bulldogs this week.

“They’re physical up front,” said Legé. “’They run the ball well, do a good job with their play-action pass. We’ll have to do a better job.

“They pose different problems than what we have seen thus far.”

For that to happen, the gameplan is simple. Iota must control the ball on offense and play better on defense, the two biggest focuses of Legé, his coaching staff and his team this week.

“We have to do a better job on defense,” said Legé. “Offensively, we saw a lot of positives.

“That’s where we started [Monday].”

Offensively, Iota has a great starting point after a strong showing in the Acadia Parish High Schools Football Jamboree last Thursday against the Rayne Wolves. The Bulldogs held the ball for 22:32 of the 30 minute game and racked up 239 yards. That good play and ball control has to continue for Iota this season, but especially early in the year.

“In the second half of the jamboree against Rayne, I thought we did a real good job of controlling tempo and keeping the ball out of their hands,” said Legé. “We were able to grind it out and that’s what you want at a jamboree, you want to see where you are most effective and build from there.”

The Bulldogs will be without Adam Ardoin, who had 16 yards on his six carries during the jamboree, as a slight shoulder separation has the running back sideline for several weeks now, meaning the load will fall to Tyler Prejean, Nick Sloane and Michael Thevis. The trio combined for 148 yards on 30 carries against Rayne.

Defensively, Iota must play better, according to Legé, starting with better tackling.

“We’ll have to do a better job defensively than we did in the jamboree,” he said. “We had a lot of missed tackles, took bad angles to the ball, a lot of which we can correct, but we just have to do a better job tackling.

“Rayne and their speed are a different thing. Speed is going to cause us problems, but when you are taking bad angles and tackling poorly, it just compounds everything.”

In their game last season, Oberlin gained 282 yards of total offense. The Bulldogs will once again have to contain the Tigers, who return a lot on both sides of the ball, including playmakers.

“There a seasoned ball club this year; they got a lot of their skill players back from last year,” said Legé. “They’ve looked real good so far in their scrimmages and last week in their jamboree.”

What will help the Bulldogs is the return of All-District defensive end Jarrette Fontenot, who suffered a torn ACL last season. During fall camp, Legé was concerned that Fontenot would not return until about Week Three, but Fontenot began practicing again Monday and Legé says he will return ahead of schedule.

“He’s cleared, so he will be playing this week and we’re happy about that,” he said.

Notable returns for Oberlin are linebacker/running back Lance Frank (who led the team in rushing last year), receiver/defensive end Jonus Godeau and running back Austin Darbonne. Darbonne was the leading offensive producer in the Tigers and Bulldogs clash last season, going 14 for 82 yards and a touchdown on the ground as well as three receptions for 59 yards.

Oberlin has four consecutive winning seasons and four district championships, a showing that is not matched by many in Southwest Louisiana. Now the Tigers look to not only continue their winning, but improve under new coach Ronald Simmons.

The Tigers’ keys to victory are the same as they have been in years past: a powerful running game, an offensive line that gives their running backs the opportunity to shine and a defense keen on stopping their opponents from gaining much. So, not only will Bulldogs have to contend not only with Oberlin’s offensive skill players, but its hard-nosed defense that also has a notable returning cast.

“They got a bunch of those guys returning from last year and they run to the ball well,” said Legé.

Acadia Parish Today

Crowley Post-Signal
P.O. Box 1589, Crowley, LA 70527
Phone: 337-783-3450
Fax: 337-788-0949

Rayne-Acadian Tribune
P.O. Box 260, Rayne, LA 70578
Phone: 337-334-3186
Fax: 337-334-8474

Church Point News
315 N. Main St., Church Point, LA 70525
Phone: 337-684-5711
Fax: 337-684-5793

Follow Us