Not much has changed heading into Friday’s matchup between the two sides at Cass High as both have identical records to what they had a year ago, and Cass coach Rick Casko is hoping the result stays the same as well.
“We had a close game with them last year. It was well fought,” he said. “They have a very solid program. They are a very sound, well-coached team.”
Northwest Whitfield is once again 2-0 heading into its matchup with the Colonels and has defeated its previous two opponents by an average of 14 points per game.
Cass has gotten off to a very good start itself and is feeling confident coming off a 43-7 victory in its previous game against Heritage, Catoosa.
“We have a great deal of confidence. There’s nothing like winning. The kids have responded well and have had a good week of practice,” Casko said. “I’d say we’re experienced and with that, the confidence comes with it.”
Northwest Whitfield is a very similar team to Cass in a multitude of ways. The Bruins have their fair share of size to go along with some speed in the secondary. They also run out of the spread offense and will look to speed the pace up, similar to the Colonels.
“They have good size, always have. They’ve been gargantuan before, but they’re still good size and they have guys who can run,” Casko said. “They run and throw the football. They do a good job of both. They run a lot of plays. They try to get a lot of plays in, so they’ll go no huddle a bit.”
The similarities between the two squads could translate into a very competitive game Friday night. Therefore, Casko believes the matchup may come down to the ancillary aspects of the game.
“I think, in a game like this, turnovers and field position are going to be very important because we match up pretty well with each other,” Casko said.
In addition, controlling the line of scrimmage will be a must for the Colonels to prevent Northwest Whitfield from getting into a flow offensively, as most no huddle teams like to do.
“We just have to get them out of rhythm and work the line of scrimmage,” Casko said. “We need to get some guys in the backfield and disrupt them a bit. On the other side of the ball, we have to move the ball and control the ball.”
Northwest Whitfield will give Cass plenty of players to account for in trying to slow the visiting team down.
“They have a running back who’s real solid and fast. They’ve always played real good defense. They have a couple of good linemen and linebackers,” Casko said. “They’re just solid. They don’t do a lot of different things, they just do it well. They play hard. They’re a hard-nosed bunch and they are a pretty balanced team.”
The Colonels are in a good position to repeat what they did a season ago. Besides the loss in Week 2 to Cartersville, Cass has been extremely impressive in the early going.
“We have to not get too comfortable. We have made our share of mistakes, but we’ve also played a couple of good games,” Casko said. “We have great team unity. The guys really care for each other, and I think that’s really strengthening each week.”