High School Sports

High School Football Notes: Transition to passing game has Bobcats clicking on offense

Responding to a question in the preseason, Bluffton High School coach Ken Cribb stopped short of saying his offense would be even better in 2011 than it was in breaking every offensive school record the year before.

His smile, though, portrayed his true thoughts. And those, it seems, were correct.

The Bobcats have scored 198 points in the first three games of the season -- an average of 66 per contest -- while resting their starters for most of the second half in each game. Eight different players have rushed for touchdowns, led by Zach Scott's five, and four have caught touchdown passes, led by Dimitri Lowry's five.

"It's a lot of fun," Cribb said of calling plays for the explosive offense. "It gets a little tough, though, because you want to work on stuff, and the problem is they're not getting pushed for four quarters."

The unprecedented offensive output puts them on pace to shatter last year's record-setting mark of 473 points in a season. In fact, if the Bobcats score 39 points in Friday's game at Estill -- an opponent they defeated 56-7 last year -- they would already be halfway to last year's 14-game total though just four games.

The Bobcats have re-structured their offense to center around a passing attack a year after relying mostly on their ground game. Quarterback C.J. Frazier has made the transition look flawless. He has already thrown for 12 touchdowns -- the same number as he did in 10 games last year -- and 761 yards while completing 61 percent of his passes.

"We're really good right now," Frazier said. "We're not going to get big-headed about it. We're just taking it week by week."

Beaufort High offense adding layers

In past seasons, opposing defenses have had a pretty good idea of what to expect from Beaufort High School.

A split-back set, with few variations, was standard. The Eagles ran out of the formation so often, that coach Mark Clifford decided to scale back this season and introduce more variety.

He said the Eagles had been running out of split backs 90-95 percent of the time, and that the offense would run most efficiently at 70 percent.

The Eagles worked out of the Wildcat formation for the first time during the season opening victory over Hilton Head High. Against rival Battery Creek, Clifford worked in the power-I and one-back, three-wide sets. The Wildcat didn't make an appearance, but only because the Eagles' offensive plays were limited by big plays from the special teams and defense.

Against the Seahawks, running back D'Vonta Cohen took snaps out of the Wildcat, with JaClay Mixon and fullback Maliek Maldonado in the backfield. Clifford said receiver Luke Smith could also be in the mix.

"We have some pretty good athletes on our team," Clifford said. "We need to use it. That's one way I think we can use it. We're going to stay basic early and try to be successful."