Tallassee is replacing most of its offensive front this year
Youth abounds with '19 squad
By Michael Butler
There are a lot of young players on the 2019 THS football roster. That doesn't mean that Tallassee head football coach Mike Battles is just getting ready for the future. He believes this team can win now.
"I think we can compete in every game. There's not one that I don't think we can't win," Battles said. "If we do what we're supposed to and stay healthy, we've got a chance."
Tallassee was 6-4 last year and missed the playoffs for the first time in over a decade. Three of the four losses were within a touchdown.
"There's right around 27-30 that will be ninth graders," Battles said. "If they stay for four years, that's a potential starting 22 as seniors. It doesn't matter what level you're at, if you have guys that have been doing it for a while that makes a huge difference.
"Guys have to be able to look down the road. It's not like in society today and immediate satisfaction. If you hang in there, the rewards are coming. You've got to stick it out. I've been doing it for 24 years. This group looks to be excited."
Overall, Tallassee's number are up. In the spring, Battles handed out 75 jerseys.
"It was fun walking out there five deep," he said. "If these kids can look down the road and have some vision, they're special."
Tallassee High School senior players (front row, left to right): Nyzarious Robinson, Will Blocker, Napoleon Reed, Jadarrion "Dee" Williams, Eng'Tavius Briskey-Chappel, Jacob Webster. (Back row, left to right): Ryan Harper, Barry Purter, Ashawntee Crispin, Tavarious "Truck" Griffin, Head Coach Mike Battles, Dalton Lanier, Ian Tatum, Matt Justiss, Matt "Bobby" Baker.
Tallassee opens the season on Friday, Aug. 23 at Catholic, team the Tigers beat 28-7 last year. 1300 WTLS/106.5 FM will have live coverage of the game beginning at 6. Kickoff is at 7. Coverage is also available on Tallassee Times TV through YouTube, Spectrum Channel 97 and the TuneIn app.
TALLASSEE VS. CATHOLIC (GAME NOTES): Tigers won last year 28-7. THS leads all-time series 3-0.
Mike Battles (8th year at Tallassee, 55-26 record; 23 overall, 172-81) *6-4 last season.
Aubrey Blackwell (4th year at Catholic, 30-15 record). 8-4 last year in 4A.
Longest Tenured Tallassee Coaches
John Edward O’Brien - 1936-52, '57 and '58 (19 seasons): 128-39-7 (74%)
Ronnie Baynes - 1974-81 (8 seasons): 33-47 (41%)
Mike Battles - 2012-19 (8 seasons): 55-26 (68%)
Woody Weaver - 1987-93 (7 seasons): 45-32 (58%)