The Next Play…. @CentreFootball @minguabeefjerky @1776Bank @HopkinsCentral

One of Centre College's approved logos...used with the college's express permission

Colonels travel to Maryville to find a Scots team playing well

It is called “next play mentality” and athletes, particularly at high levels of competition require it. It is the phenomenon of recovering from a poor play/performance, having a short memory, and not letting the residue from the earlier event infect what you do next. Centre suffered a tough loss. No time to cry in our “cookies and milk” as there is plenty of season left ahead and a conference championship still very much within grasp.

HB Lyon, Scouting Director, KPGFootball

Danville, KY: We won’t spend much time on this but congratulations to Hanover College on a program defining, coveted win for the Panthers in Danville, Kentucky last night. RB, Austin Opel, from Meade County, Kentucky, played very well.

We covered Austin for years when he was a prep star in the commonwealth. Our chests swelled with pride watching him thrive even though we were cheering for the other team.

We have a very poignant football memory which fits well here this morning as we publish this article. We have an editorial board member whose son played junior pro in Clarksville, TN.

When his son was in junior pro, playing for a man who turned out to be among the very best football coaches this young man ever had, the kid perpetrated the football equivalent of wetting the bed. This young man, playing center in a spread offense, had yacked the snap.

…the kid perpetrated the football equivalent of wetting the bed

Fletcher Long, Senior Sports Writer, KPGFootball

Anyone who has ever played the position, or been the parent of a kid who has played the position, knows all too well about the “yacked” snap. This particular yacker resulted in a turnover, and a costly one.

The guy’s son was 8-years old when this happened. The kid was leaving the field obviously crushed. No one wanted to let the team down any less than this young, eight-year old.

The coach, himself having formerly played LB at UK, knelt down in front of the kid, clasped his large hands on either side of the kid’s chubby, tear stained cheeks, looked him deeply in the eyes, and gave him advice we have never forgotten.

“That play is over, son. I don’t want to hear another thing about that play. What I want from you is the next play. Football is ALWAYS about the next play!

Around the magazine’s offices, we have come to refer to that as “next-playing it.” It is required of our staff, writers, editors, pretty much the entire lot. It is a maxim to which we all attempt to ascribe.

Football is ALWAYS about the next play!

Junior Pro Football Coach, Clarksville (TN), Packers

Centre opened the season last night. There were some fine individual performances spattered amongst a very forgettable team result.

Will McDaniel

We lost to Hanover College. Hanover is a team we are accustomed to beating and a team who has coveted Centre’s level of success and worked to get to Centre’s level as a collegiate football program.

It would appear the Panthers have arrived.

Looking briefly at last night, Centre rushed for 158-yards while passing for 121-yards. Centre was three (3) for 15 on third down and held Hanover to two (2) for 12.

The defense was solid to spectacular on the night overall. Any defense which can hold a college offense to 10-points should win the game.

Centre was effective running the football. Of particular note was Will McDaniel‘s 101-yards rushing on 16-attempts with the lone TD scored. McDaniel averaged over six (6.3) yards a carry with a long of 35.

Will McDaniel [gained] 101-yards rushing on 16-attempts with the lone TD scored

Centre Sports Information Dept.

On a night where the offense could only manage seven points, the prodigious rushing output by the team ranks among the only bright sports on that side of the ball. We never could get the passing game, particularly the timing required to do well in that phase, tracking the way we would have liked.

Evan Elder

There were some stars on the defensive side of the football. We were particularly impressed with the play of a couple of juniors, Evan Elder, and Parker Guillaume. Both of those young men, who prepped at Trinity and St. Xavier respectively, held high the Derby City’s banner with their play in the opener.

Elder had nine (9)-tackles and Guillaume had eight (8) to pace the defense. Durrell Bard and Elder had three tackles for loss a piece.

Bard is a “big hit” specialist. We saw that on specials a year ago and the defense is benefitting from it now. Elder showed he was down with the big hit parade too, registering several tackles which made us wince.

Parker Guillaume and Evan Elder had 9-tackles a piece

Centre Sports Information Dept.
Parker Guillaume

Centre’s offense struggled. We just don’t know how else to categorize a unit which managed seven (7)-first downs the entire game.

General rule of thumb in journalism is numbers under 10, you have to spell out (i.e. one, two, three…). Numbers ten and over, the journalist is permitted to use the figure as opposed to the spelling (10, 11, 12…)

When it comes to first downs gained, we don’t covet having to spell the number. You get our drift, we’re sure.

Looking ahead…


Next up for Centre is a trip to Maryville to play the Scots and former Centre OC, Ben Fox, who is doing a fine job there. Maryville upended Sewanee in Andy McCullough’s opener on the Tiger sideline, 28-8.

Maryville had 29-first downs against the Tigers, 20-achieved rushing from scrimmage, eight (8)-passing, and one (1) by penalty. The Scots gained 315-yards on the ground, against Sewanee, holding the Tigers to 41.

Maryville also passed for 203-yards, gaining over 500-yards of total offense (518). The Scotsmen held the Tigers to 147-total yards.

Devon White had nine stops…with seven of those being solos and two assists with two TFL’s

Maryville College Sports Information Dept.

Bryson Rollins completed 13 of his 25-passing attempts for 203-yards and two (2)-TD’s throwing three (3)-INT’s. Tad Logan, Jr. gained 97-yards on 21-attempts while Chris Cooper gained 86-yards in only six (6)-carries, scoring a rushing TD.


Devon White had nine (9)-stops to pace the defense with seven (7) of those being solos and two (2)-assists, and two (2)-TFL’s, a figure which led the team, together with Jonathan Harris who also had two (2)-TFL’s.

Harris was all over the opposing QB’s in the opener, hitting Sewanee’s QB’s twice. Jordan Lacey and Jacob Berven each registered sacks.

Bryce Collins flipped the field well in the punt game. He averaged 50.3-yards a punt over three (3) attempts with a long of 60 and one of the three being downed inside the 20. Trey Hampton was a perfect 4 for 4 on PAT’s.


Allow us to nut-shell this for you. We were talking after the game to a Centre player who didn’t want to be named in the article so we will succumb to his stated wishes. However what he told us was too good not to share.

“We’re going to find out, this coming week, what kind of program we have here at Centre,” this guy told us. “If we come out and get ‘back to work’ then we are the championship caliber program I came to Danville to join.”

“However, if we come out and point fingers at this guy or that guy, or this coach or that coach, then we aren’t where we should be as a program.” Kind of reminds you of that “next playing” scenario, doesn’t it?

We are going to end this article like the junior pro coach we witnessed impact a young kid’s life years ago…we don’t want to hear another word about Hanover. Give us the next play, guys; the next game.

Remember, Football is about the next play!

This is Fletcher W. Long, reporting for KPGFootball, reminding you to PLAY THROUGH THE WHISTLE!

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About Fletcher Long 1534 Articles
Two-time winner of Kentucky Press Association awards for excellence in writing and reporting news stories while Managing Editor of the Jackson (KY) Times-Voice


  1. Thanks KPGFootball for the coverage! As a parent of one the players, I wish there was more interest and coverage in what I believe is a solid program.

    Quick disclaimer: My comments are not to disparage any player or coach on the team. I know every individual connected with the program puts his or her mind, body, and spirit into the greatest team sport on the planet. My comments are meant to be constructive, and hopefully spark positive banter about a sport I truly love, and a program my allegiance is growing for. If you take the time to read this post, I hope your sentiments are mutual.

    Full disclosure, I had little to no knowledge of Centre College prior to my son’s recruitment. I can recall when Coach Frye convinced us in the coffee shop not only about the school and his program, but also about himself as a person and leader that has my son’s best interest at heart. Our family will always be appreciative of the opportunity he has given him at such a prestigious institution. Thus I am a “converted fan”.

    With that said I had a 3-hour plus drive home of mulling over what I saw last night. PEV (Pursue Excellence with Vengeance) is the cornerstone of Coach Frye’s program. I can feel the passion every time he references it. However, are we really in pursuit?

    I totally agree with the player in your article about not finger pointing and putting the working in. To the writer’s point about on to the next game… it. But as an observant fan, the game was eerily reminiscing of last season’s offensive challenges. This unit appears to still be in search of an identity, which is a concern considering the number of starters that returned.

    Defensively, we played smart and with aggression. I totally concur about 53, he was all over the field. The unit as a whole gave us every opportunity to win. Kudos to the players and coaches. Also shout out to special team especially #6. However, if our offensive struggles continue, is it realistic to expect the D-unit to keep us in the game against the likes of Berry, BSC, or Trinity?

    From my purview offensively we are at a crossroad between youth vs. allegiance.
    The coaches have done an exceptional job in recruiting. The last two classes are talented, and we got glimpses of that last night. Coach speech about decrease mistakes in order to increase play time is a sound philosophy, and it makes sense if talent is on par. But is that the case here?

    Is it time for a shake up and/or turning the page toward the future? There is no substitute for on the job the training in any capacity if done appropriately. I truly believe this program has a 3-year window to take the next step in being in the top echelon of the SAA. The future is now or will it be a year of deferment in development and growth toward a conference championship?

    I had my own encounter with an upperclassman on offense who will remain “autonomous”. He expressed his frustration about their performance. “We need to put our playermakers on the field” (paraphrased for all ages). And let me be clear about his point, this isn’t about finger pointing it’s about WINNING. “I came here to win not to just to play” (again paraphrased for all ages). 😀 There is a sense of urgency for many players especially for those with 9 to 20 games left in their careers. Thus the frustration in this young man represents those who came here not just to pursue excellence with vengeance, but to capture it.

    I know its WEEK 1, so I am far from hitting the panic button. But as mentioned earlier last night felt like the start of the 2022 campaign, but worst. We lost.

    Hopeful we will see a stronger showing against a young but talented Maryville team.

    Go Colonels Football!!!

    Thanks again KPGFootball for providing this forum. Keep up the good work. I hope you know your hard work is not in vain.

    • Like any fan, we question some of the personnel deployments. Obviously, that is not “our call” and we aren’t attending practice. That said, as a program, “you are your record.” We are 6-5 in our last 11-football games. Our “body of work” indicates a downward departure from what the program has been historically.That QB from Maryville is a sophomore and we saw his talent on full display last year. Maryville will be a tough game for us. Scoring seven points will doom us to failure.

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