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October 26th, 2012
MABEN â€“ The Eupora Eagles were far from winning a district title at the end of the 2011 season.
Friday night that all changed.
The Eagles beat the homestanding East Webster Wolverines 37-7 to win the Class 2A, Region 2, District 4 championship.
MABEN â€“ West Oktibbeha was looking to keep their perfect Class A, Region 3 record intact when they lined up with Noxapater on Friday night.
On the other side of the football, defending Class A State Champion Noxapater was looking for the same thing and when all was done, the Tigers achieved the goal of perfection and left with a 57-6 victory.
Former Mississippi State linebacker Barrin Simpson knows a little bit about streaks.
He was a part of back-to-back State championship teams that finished 15-0 each at Starkville High School in 1994-95.
In 1999, Simpson and the Bulldogs jumped out to an 8-0 start before losing a 19-7 decision to the Alabama Crimson Tide in Tuscaloosa.
The Starkville Academy Volunteers have faced some tough challenges throughout the season, but before they can begin postseason action, they have one more test in the form of Presbyterian Christian School tonight.
â€śPCS is one of the best teams in the state,â€ť Starkville Academy head coach Jeff Terrill said. â€śThey are No. 2 in their region, so they certainly bring a lot to the table.â€ť
The Starkville Yellowjackets are sensing something special is happening again this season.
That has caused a couple of players to go the extra mile and play through the pain of an injury.
Preston Baker has a sore ankle and David Fair had a bad knee, but those two Yellowjackets continue to contribute to the team despite their ailments.
The West Oktibbeha Timberwolves face the Noxapater Tigers, creating a showdown for the ages in Class A, Region 3.
â€śThis is a big game for us, simply because this is the next game on our schedule,â€ť West Oktibbeha coach Adam Lowrey said.
ACKERMAN â€“ The Ackerman Indians closed out the regular season in impressive fashion Thursday night.
In Class 2A, Region 2 action, the Indians enjoyed a 42-7 victory over the Hamilton Lions.
Dan Mullen stood in front of a room overflowing with reports in Birmingham, Ala. four years ago and told them his Mississippi State Bulldogs would compete for championships.
What else was a first-year head coach supposed to say?
Just about everyone in Starkville has the Mississippi State-Alabama football matchup on their minds this week.
Co-defensive coordinator and linebackers coach Geoff Collins of the Bulldogs is no different.
HOOVER, Ala. â€“ Accountability.
That was first-year Mississippi State head coach Rick Ray's top priority when he arrived in Starkville.
"I want to establish a culture of accountability," Ray told reporters at the Southeastern Conference Basketball Media Day Thursday. "That has probably been the biggest challenge so far."