Jordan-Matthews’ 3-8 mark, by itself, is deceiving. The Jets lost all six of their games decided by single digits to finish fourth in the Mid-State 2A Conference.
Part of that is a testament to coach Marty Scotten, who is entering his 21st season as the Jets’ head coach. It’s the longest tenure of any current public-school football coach in The News & Observer area.
“I still enjoy doing it. As long as I’m able and as long as they’ll have me, I’ll keep doing it,” Scotten said.
What’s the biggest challenge this year?
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A thin roster, but the Jets are used to that. With no middle school football in Chatham County, Scotten has to encourage athletes who’ve never played organized football to come give it a try, and he hasn’t had enough in awhile to field a junior varsity.
“When you get to high school and have never played and don’t really know what’s going on, it’s tough. It’s intimidating,” Scotten said.
What players will the Jets miss the most?
Trajan Glover and twins Rahman and Rahim Mateen accounted for 17 of last year’s 22 rushing touchdowns. Rahim was an East-West All-Star pick and both were all-district first-team picks in basketball.
“They were very special players who played a lot of varsity football,” Scotten said of the Mateens. “You can’t really replace those guys.”
What’s the best-case scenario?
The team stays healthy and wins some early nonconference games that got away last year such as West Montgomery (27-18), Northwood (21-7), Union Pines (28-21), Providence Grove (27-26) and/or Eastern Randolph (19-13).
If the Jets can do that and use their size in the trenches and returning all-conference picks Noah Wright, Tucker Bean and Mark Drumheller to their advantage, they could sneak into the playoffs despite having just six seniors on the roster.
More on the Jets
Last year: 3-8 (2-3 Mid-State 2A).
Five-year average: 5-7 (2-3).
Preseason N&O rank: Unranked.
Offense: Spread Wing-T
Defense: 40 front.
Coaches: Marty Scotten (head coach/off. coordinator), Daniel Griffith (QBs), Darrell Bean (RBs/WRs), Todd Roper (def. coordinator/LBs), Randy Collins (OL), Trazon Mason (DL), Chris Graves (DB), Lane Bray (defensive assistant).
Contributors: Carson Bean (Sr., QB), Noah Wright (Sr., RB/DB), Tucker Bean (Jr., OL/DL), Mark Drumheller (Jr., LB/RB), Genesis Brooks (Jr., LB).
The main number: 6 – the Jets have just six seniors.
Aug. 19 at West Montgomery, 7:30 p.m.
Aug. 26 vs. Cedar Ridge, 7:30 p.m.
Sep. 2 at Northwood, 7:30 p.m.
Sep. 9 vs. Union Pines, 7:30 p.m.
Sep. 16 at Providence Grove, 7:30 p.m.
Sep. 23 BYE
Sep. 30 vs. Eastern Randolph, 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 7* vs. Bartlett-Yancey, 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 14* vs. Graham, 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 21* vs. Reidsville, 7:30 p.m.
Oct. 28* at Carrboro, 7:30 p.m.
Nov. 4* at Cummings, 7:30 p.m.
Note: *Conference game.