Trousdale County’s Yellow Jackets returned to the football practice field on July 11, beginning to fine-tune their preparations for the 2021 season.
Coach Blake Satterfield, who is entering his third season, has some holes to fill after losing a senior class that made the playoff semifinals three straight years — something not accomplished since 1997-99. But leadership should not be a weak point as the 2021 Jacket squad will have a number of experienced seniors.
“We lost a lot of experience but we have a lot of experience coming back,” the coach said. “You look at Lucas Scruggs, a three-year starter; Jess Holder, a three-year starter; right tackle Eric Gunter, who was an all-region player for us last year at tight end.
Our right tackle will be Carsey West, who had all kinds of snaps last year on the defensive side.”
The battle for key starting positions includes both center and quarterback. Satterfield said Jon Brandon and Rob Atwood were battling it out for the center position.
At quarterback, junior Kyle Shockley, senior Mason Maddox and sophomore Kobyn Calhoun have been showcasing their talents in a bid to win the starting nod.
“We’ve got three quarterbacks: Kobyn, Mason and Kyle. My job is starting next week I have to narrow that down to who’s my starter,” Satterfield said, adding that after two passing tournament Calhoun looked to be a step ahead of the others.
The Yellow Jackets also are looking to improve their depth in the backfield, with Keenan Burnley moving to running back after filling in at quarterback each of the past two seasons. Also working at wingback are Bryson Claiborne, Kane Burnley and Brian Banks.
Xavier Harper, who did not play last year but was an all-region pick in 2019, will add depth at tight end as will Cole Gregory.
Trousdale County competed in a passing tournament at Jackson County on July 15, winning all three games against Monterey, Jackson County and White County. Satterfield said the defense particularly stood out.
“We moved around, got a lot of interceptions, made good calls and had good communication,” he said. “Overall, we had a very productive day.”
Satterfield has also adjusted his coaching staff after Paul Pitts left for Gallatin. Satterfield himself will serve as co-offensive coordinator along with Kyle Gregory.
“We work really well together and Kyle’s got great ideas,” Satterfield stated. “He’s going to be a great asset for us this year. I know he’s excited.”
Also joining the coaching staff is Justin McGettigan, who will coach running backs and linebackers. Jacob Smith returns and will coach the defensive line and tight ends.
The players can go into full pads on Monday, July 26 and were to begin transitioning into helmets and shoulder pads this week.
“We’ve had a good summer; I’ve been really proud of our guys,” Satterfield said. “This has been one of the most fun offseasons I’ve had and our kids are jelling together. We haven’t had many bad days of practice and they’re enjoying the game of football.
Reach Chris Gregory at 615-450-5756 or firstname.lastname@example.org.