Long before the film “Remember the Titans,” before New York Jets precursors the “Titans of New York,” and even before the ill-fated Titanic set out across the Atlantic for New York, there were the Titans of Greek mythology. These were the second generation of gods of legend, preceding and ultimately overthrown by the Zeus and the Olympian deities.
This fall, a dozens of Titans of Chapel Hill are looking to overthrow the odds and inscribe their own mythology on the recordbooks of local youth football. The Chapel Hill 7-8-year-old Titans, the 9-10 Titan team, and the 11-12 Chapel Hill squad are gearing up for a run at Quad County Recreational Football League (QCRFL) play-off berths. The QCRFL teams are recreational agency-supported comprised of an informal association of programs from Randolph, Chatham, Orange and Wake counties. The teams are aligned through common rules and goals that enable play across organizations.
7-8s vary schemes: Having just moved to the area from New York, new Chapel Hill youth football coach Thom Turner said his 7-8 Titans (1-2) have a number of offensive looks.
“We run shotgun, pistol, a T-formation, a double-wing formation, and we’ve tried a little wishbone,” Turner said. “We change a lot, because what works one week might not work the next.”
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After losing to Asheboro on opening day, the squad came back to soundly defeat Holly Springs 29-0, before losing to Siler City.
“They’re learning a lot, and it’s interesting to see the guys who came up from flag football last year,” Turner said. “They go from the first tackle practices, but by the third game they’re little football players.”
While the coach’s son Billie Turner is calling signals for the team, the coach also praised ball carriers Jacari Burnette and Mason Hughes, ends Amir Farrington and Jasiah Allen, and flanker Makhai Manning. Holding down the line were Jarien Boiven, Jordan Jones, Zion Durham, Charlie Farkouh, and Sincere Bynum.
Turner said defensive standouts included Tyson Done and Syhre Laney at cornerback, Devin Whitted at safety, and Lamonte Brandon on the defensive line.
“The line: that’s where games are won and lost,” Turner said.
Turner also noted the wealth of talented assistant coaches in Jay Hughes, Money Clark and Koji Farrington.
After heading to Siler City to play East Chatham this past Saturday, the Titans travel to Randleman this weekend.
9-10s aiming for playoffs: A six-point loss is all that stood between the 9-10 Titans (2-1) and an unblemished record halfway through their season.
“We’re in third place right now,” coach Rod Edwards said last week. “We had our first lost, 6-0. We’ve got a great defense, but our offense was a little rusty that Saturday.”
“We run the wing-T, the straight T-formation, and I-formation,” Edwards added. “They’re pretty smart for 9- and 10-year olds: we have 42 plays.”
Field smarts begins with second-year quarterback Josh Kelley Edwards said: “He puts players where they need to be if they’re out of position. Josh isn’t too big, but he’s really smart.”
Carrying the ball are Jakori Leak, Josh Roberson, and Johnniyus Sharpe, and clearing a path are linemen Cole Scardina, Eric Whaley, Sajei Bland, and Lamon Brandon. Defensive stoppers include Malakhi Luther, Jacori Leak, Owen Kiester.
Edwards said another tight end Ronnie Turner was “making a lot of noise,” but recently suffered a season-ending injury.
The team faces East Chatham on Oct. 15.
11-12s just a step away from greatness: With a win at Holly Springs, the 11-12 Titans (1-2) under veteran coach Elvin Munn are coming into their own.
“We’re just a step away from being the elite team we want to be, from winning the next three games and making the playoffs,” Munn said. “It’s just a matter of everyone gelling together.”
Ball carriers include Isaiah Roberson, Jaden Holmes, and Idris Webb, behind the quarterback threesome of Noe Munn, Jevontay Paisant, and L.J. Riggsbee.
“On our line we’ve got Walter Durham, Tarron Kyes, the twins Martez and Marquez Cotton, and Kiyon Brown,” Munn said.
Running a wing-T with a full house and an I-formation, Munn said the team can play conservative or wide open.
The squad travels to play Randleman Saturday.