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Monday, May 2, 2016

Owls provide thrills at jamboree

Monday, August 20, 2012

One of the Owls' many new faces, sophomore Brandon Cline, got some touches during the Oak Grove jamboree.
(Chris Allen/Democrat-News)
OAK GROVE -- The Marshall football team got a dry run a week before the start of the regular season during Friday's four-school jamboree at Oak Grove.

Overall, it was a solid showing, especially for an offense which had to be revamped after scoring a mere 60 points a year ago. The Owls' first team -- which was on the field for the first half in each of the three 12-play unit sessions -- recorded three touchdowns in 18 snaps, while the defense yielded only one.

"They were excited to play," said first-year MHS head coach Jon Stockman. "We needed to get our here and see how we would compete against some good football teams."

The Owls started off against Warrensburg, which ended their winless campaign last year with a 52-8 whipping, and gave up only six yards. When Marshall's offense took the field, it rolled through the Tigers.

Junior Tyler Cott ran for 10 yards and a first down on two carries, senior Brandon Johnson gained six yards and senior Marc Plummer moved past the chains with an eight-yard haul. Plummer broke through on the next play for a 16-yard TD run and on the next snap senior Alex Maupin connected with Johnson on a fade route for a 40-yard score.

It wasn't that easy all night. The Owls fumbled on the opening play against Higginsville and the defense missed a tackle which allowed senior quarterback Adam Reid to rumble 40 yards for a touchdown on the Huskers' first snap.

After the early miscue, Marshall got the running game cranking during the second segment. Plummer picked up 15 yards and Johnson broke around left end for a 21-yard touchdown.

"I thought we looked pretty good," Stockman assessed. "Except a couple of times against Higginsville, when they got loose on us, the defense played great."

Oak Grove opened the final set with a 28-yard run by sophomore Aaron Graham, moving to the Owls' 6-yard line on the next play. However, the defense stiffened as Plummer got in on three tackles to stop the Panthers short of the end zone.

After another fumble, Marshall picked up first downs on a pair of nine-yard runs by Plummer and an eight-yard Johnson burst. The subs got their only score when senior Darion Lawrence blasted in from eight yards out.

"We had the ball on the ground way too many times," Stockman said about adjusting to the veer-option offense. "Other than that, I think they're picking it up."

Even more encouraging than the highlights on the field was the sight of some 70 players dressed in black and red uniforms. That's nearly twice as many as typically were available to the Owls in 2011.

That reflected an attitude among the team, a week ahead of Friday's season opener at Chillicothe, which was significantly different from this time last year.

"That's how football is supposed to feel!" senior Zach Bishop shouted to his teammates midway through the scrimmage. "It feels like we have a family out here."

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One of the biggest issues is the fact that everyone expects the every coach to be Coach Naylor. Coach Naylors gone, times have changed, the game has evolved and coaching in general is much different. How about we let Stockman be Stockman and begin his own legacy?

I hope our cheerleaders are ready, I see lots of pushups in store for them this season.

-- Posted by Tigers/Owls4Life96 on Wed, Aug 22, 2012, at 7:18 AM

What a difference a year makes. Coach Stockman, in a sense has made a liar out of me because of some of the comments I made last year. I maintained that you have to have great players to succeed (in one discussion). However maybe he hasn't made me out a liar. Maybe he can recognize talent, recruit it, and coach it. Apparently last year's coach could do none of those things. The early evidence suggests that he could only blow smoke, and turn off players.

It's early, and I don't want to put undue pressure on the kids, and coaches, but maybe Marshall has found its new Naylor, plus something extra!

-- Posted by Oklahoma Reader on Mon, Aug 20, 2012, at 5:24 PM

I am very proud of our football team and coach stockman,,,,,,go owls!

-- Posted by mofireman on Mon, Aug 20, 2012, at 4:48 PM

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