Starkville High School gained valuable experience on the gridiron Friday afternoon in Mississippi State’s annual ‘Big School’ 7-on-7 tournament.
The Yellowjackets competed in a field of 24 teams featuring some of the top athletes in Mississippi and Alabama. And at the end of the day it was the area teams that found their way to the final four.
The semi-finals saw Starkville face Noxubee County while Meridian squared off against Tuscaloosa Northridge, all of which were undefeated heading into the showdown.
Unfortunately for SHS that’s where the day would end as Tigers would move on to win the event title over the Meridian Wildcats.
“I thought we got everything we needed out of the day,” said SHS head coach Jamie Mitchell. “We got a lot of conditioning against great competition. It was really good for us.”
Mitchell explained events such as MSU 7-on-7 tournament as exactly what his team needs in order to gain experience and increase their mental and physical conditioning.
“You can go out and run the guys any time you want to but when you line up against someone else you get more, you’re going to run faster, the conditioning is just so much better,” he said. “When you mix in the competition part of it, it is just second to none. These type camps are just outstanding.”
Mitchell also uses summer camps as teaching tools for his younger athletes who may not have seen a higher level of competition.
“I think it is priceless the way they can see the competition happening in front of them and the way they can learn to compete like that when their time comes,” said Mitchell. “I tell ya, of the 24 teams here today there we 20 pretty talented football teams. This was very much worth our time.”
Monday night Starkville will be back on the field as they will host area teams for a 7-on-7 event of its own. Next Friday the Yellowjackets will board a bus bound for Tuscaloosa, Ala. to play in Alabama’s annual tournament.