The B.B. Comer-Childersburg rivalry has been played on a Thursday night spanning back to 1987.
Comer head coach Anthony Jacks, in his fourth season at the helm, has yet to beat Childersburg, although the last time Comer beat Childersburg was in 2000.
However, the last time Comer beat Childersburg came at Childersburg. The last time the two teams met at Childersburg, it was the closest contest between the two teams during Jacks’ tenure with Childersburg prevailing 33-22.
“What’s in the past is in the past and what’s in the future is in the future,” Jacks said. “All we can control is what we got going on right now. That’s what we’ve tried to train our guys to think like mentally.”
Jacks feels good about where his team is at right now.
“I’m pleased with where we are; we’ve got to get a lot better, but everything we have seen on film is correctable,” he said. “Our kids are trying hard and they’ve been playing hard. I’ve got a good group of kids and I love coaching them.”
Childersburg head coach Adam Fossett was successful in his first foray into the rivalry last season as a head coach with Childersburg winning on the road 27-6.
Fossett knows his team is hungry to pick up a win against a rival team.
“Any coach will tell you it’s good to start off 1-0 and I would definitely tell you the same thing,” he said. “We’ve got to take care of the little things. If we take care of assignments, take care of the football, and if 11 individuals do their job, whether it’s offense, defense or special teams, we should have success.”
Jacks explained the rivalry between Comer and Childersburg is a special one, both personally and to both of the school’s communities.
“Coach Fossett and I are really good friends,” Jacks said. “We became real good friends when we worked together on the staff at Winterboro. I worked for him at Winterboro. We just became good friends, we go to the same church and our kids are real good friends. They love playing each other. We get together a lot of times in the off-season. It’s just kind of a unique situation with us just personally, but when it comes down to it, it’s not really about us.”
When asked if Comer feels added pressure to win because of the nature of it being an important rivalry game, Jacks indicated pressure wasn’t the right word.
“The pressure is more internal than any other type of pressure: we want to play well,” Jacks explained. “Even though this game isn’t a region game for us, it’s still an important game just because we all know each other. Our kids know their kids, it’s just right up the road; it’s a big game for us. That’s where the pressure comes from because it’s just a natural rivalry. It’s a great rivalry between two schools.”
Childersburg struggled in their 23-0 jamboree loss to Munford last week, although Fossett believes part of the team’s struggles can be attributed to attrition.
“We had to move some guys around because some kids weren’t able to play,” Fossett said. “We had a few injuries, so we had to make some changes here and there. Ultimately, it hurt us. We should be back at full tilt this week, barring anything happens in the remainder of the week in practice or in anything like that.
Hopefully, we’ve got all those problems straightened out. We’re definitely addressing them and making sure we’ve got all the right kids in the right places.”
Jacks knows securing a win against Childersburg is a daunting task.
“They’re very talented,” Jacks said. “They’ve got a quarterback that can throw the ball around. He’s got a great arm, probably one of the better throwers we’ll see all year long. They’ve got two running backs in (Kendarius) Calhoun and (Tim) Tilley that can break tackles, run hard, and they’re a real challenge to stop.
“Defensively, they play 3-3 stack and they’re very good at what they do. They’re going to force the issue on defense. They’re not going to be one of these teams that bend but don’t break. They’re going to come after you. It gives you a chance to make the big plays, but at the same time it has a tendency, and we didn’t did a real good job of blocking them last year. If you can block them, it’s okay. Then again, if you can’t block them, it’s going to be a long night.”
Fossett said he knows Comer will be even better this year than they were last year when they qualified for the playoffs.
“They’ve definitely gotten better at what they do,” he said. “We hope that we have a grasp on their running game and their backs. They’ve got a few kids that are pretty quick, so we’re going to have to make sure that we wrap up and make tackles and play assignment football defensively. Offensively, they’re big up front, so it’ll be a test for our guys to be able to block them and keep them out of the backfield. It’s one of those things where it probably doesn’t take much for either group to get fired up and excited to play the game.”
Fossett thinks his squad will have a big advantage in playing before an excited home crowd.
“Playing at home is going to be huge for us,” he said. “I think our home crowds are definitely going to be better than they were last year and we had some pretty good crowds last year. There’s a little excitement back in the air as far as Childersburg football. Hopefully, we have a big crowd come out and support us.”
B.B. Comer plays at Childersburg tonight at 7 p.m.