This is the first time in coach Derrick Davis’ tenure with the team that the Wildcats have fallen winless in their first two games.
After suffering tough losses to Bradley Central and Chattanooga Central, the Wildcats will look to rebound against an 0-2 McMinn Central team and get their season back on track. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. at Larry Davis Football Complex.
“The good thing about it, those first two were not district games, and this Friday is,” said Davis.
The coaching staff has been working hard to remind the boys that an 0-2 start hurts their total wins, but does not have to affect the team’s overall goal of a district championship.
Davis said this week’s practices have focused of fundamentals and conditioning after mental lapses helped the previous two opponents find the end zone too easily.
“Things are not going to get better until we stop helping the other team out, and that’s what we have been doing, and that’s what has been so frustrating,” Davis explained.
Traditionally a heated archrivalry, this is a matchup that Polk has taken advantage of, winning nine out of the last 11 meetings with the Chargers.
However, Davis is taking a hard stand against considering this game as anything less than a very important game against a much-improved rival football program.
“They have greatly improved, and the thing that I see from them is that they are hungry for a win,” Davis stated.
A hungry McMinn Central team combined with the fact that Polk has faced little adversity in its previous two seasons, going 21-3, this game has the potential to show the mettle of the Wildcats.
“The biggest question is, ‘How are we going to respond this week?’ I would like to think that we are going to fight to cut out some of these mistakes and get back to what we are capable of doing,” Davis said. “It’s the little things that are killing us.”
In preparation for the game, the Wildcats have made a few personnel changes and have focused hard on eliminating costly penalties, blocking and wrapping up on tackles.
“It’s a rivalry game, right up the road. It’s a district game, and it’s an important game for both teams. This is one of those years that you can’t say, ‘Polk’s overwhelmingly favored.’ We’re not, we are not in that boat right now,” Davis said.
No one in the locker room is getting ready to panic though, and if the Wildcats can get a win Friday they have the potential to right the ship and gain some confidence going forward.