’24 RB/LB has big shoes to fill
Can we all admit Russell’s program is not what it once was? However, TJ Maynard is committed to getting it back where it belongs. Players like Andre Richardson-Crews are the type which put programs back on the map. He has the intangible. He now has the limelight. It is time for this little light to shine.HB Lyon, Scouting Division, KPGFootball
Ivan McGlone, Russell’s state championship and Hall of Fame football coach, who is the KHSAA’s tenth winningest coach in its history with a 316-151 record over 38-years with three trips to the championship (’78, 2005, 2006 (lost to Mercer County)), of which McGlone won two (1978 in 3A, 2005 in 2A), had an interesting take on championship victories.
“Thirty minutes from now, that’ll all be over,” McGlone said, as quoted by The Daily Independent on Nov. 26, 1978. This was in reference to the hoopla following Russell’s 17-7 Class 3A state championship game victory over Woodford County.
“They’ll calm down,” he continued. “A victory like this only last about 30-minutes. A loss lasts two or three years.”
McGlone knew about tough losses. All the greats know about tough losses. You coach in the high school ranks for 38-years and you will experience some very tough losses.
Russell’s program is experiencing some tough losses of late. In ’22, the Red Devils were 2-9.
That record is somewhat deceiving. The Devils lost to Class 5A, Montgomery County, by 4-points and were shaved, by 7-points, by Class 6A Dunbar.
Still, coach TJ Maynard remembers the way it was in the day. Maynard remembers the Wing T offense the old boys ran like a symphony. Maynard grew up around the Red Devils “three yards and a cloud of dust” attack.
Maynard even remembers center Rob Tooley, who lived on Maynard’s street when Maynard was still a kid. Tooley was the inventor of the “Tooley Trot,” a hustling high-stepping way Tooley ran up to the line of scrimmage to snap the football.
Coach Maynard was eight (8) years old, during the ’78 season, and recalls the team losing to Greenup County. Young Maynard would hang around the locker room hoping to spot his favorite player while listing to the Greenup players chide, derisively, the “Tooley Trot” and its innovator.
Tooley didn’t care. Neither did Maynard.
All of that aside, we believe Russell is poised to take a big step forward in ’23. Why not? Andrew Richardson-Crews returns for his senior year.
Richardson-Crews is a 6’0,” 200-pound RB/LB who scouts seem to really like. There is a lot about him to like.
In ’22, Richardson-Crews sort of lurked in the shadows of Colby Rock. Rock was also a RB/LB combo guy.
Rock led the team in rushing attempts, yards rushing from scrimmage, and rushing TD’s. Rock also led the team in tackles, logging 59-stops, together with a FF.
Rock is out of eligibility, which leaves Richardson-Crews to pick up the slack. Richardson Crews’ performance in ’22 wasn’t exactly chicken-feed.
Richardson-Crews was second on the team in carries, yards rushing, and TD’s scored rushing. From his LB post, he was among the leaders in tackles and TFL’s.
Richardson-Crews passes the eye-test. He’s done the work in the weight room. He looks the part.
Now it is time for Richardson-Crews to “play the part.” This is his senior year and, harkening back to what Coach McGlone said 40-some odd years ago, those wins last about 30-minutes but the losses stay with you two to three years.
We are ready for Russell, Coach Maynard, and Richardson-Crews to start having some rippingly-fun half hours. Like it used to be!
This is Fletcher Long, once again reporting for KPGFootball, reminding you to PLAY THROUGH THE WHISTLE!
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