FOOTBALL PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Tiger defender catches on quickly

Published 9:04 am Thursday, September 26, 2013

At first glance, only the statistics were remarkable about Beau Waid’s performance last week.

The senior defensive end for Chilton County High School compiled 14 tackles and two sacks in a 21-7 win over Talladega.

But the real story is that Waid is excelling in his role as a starter even though this season marks his first playing time since youth league.

“A couple of kids talked him into coming out and trying it, and the next thing you know, he’s the starting defensive end,” CCHS coach Donnie Hand said. “He’s learning every day. He works hard. He’s going to keep getting better and better as the season goes along.”

Waid’s improvement was obvious against Talladega, as his 14 tackles were more than he had collected in his first three games combined.

As would be the case for any inexperienced player, Waid’s problem to begin with was that he had to spend so much time thinking about the techniques coaches had taught him.

“Instead of having to think about it, it’s becoming second nature,” Hand said.

But the coach acknowledged that Waid’s situation has its advantages.

“Sometimes, it’s easier to coach a guy like that because he doesn’t have bad technique,” Hand said. “Whatever you’re teaching him, it’s his first time. Sometimes, when they get to be seniors, they think they know everything and you can’t change what they are doing.”

Waid is part of a CCHS defense that hopes to progress into a team strength like it was last season.

Though Hand said he was disappointed that Talladega was able to rush for more than 100 yards, the Chilton defense has been much more effective the past two games than it was in the first two.

Sill, the Tigers need to be more stout against teams’ efforts to run the ball up the middle, Hand said.

“We have good speed to get to the outside, but when they run it up the gut, we have some trouble,” he said.

Marbury, who visits this week for Chilton’s homecoming, will attempt to spread the defense out as well as pack it in and run up the middle.

“We’ve got to keep getting better,” Hand said.

Honorable mention

Tyler Armstrong, Maplesville

•Recorded seven tackles, including one sack, in a 62-12 win over Akron.

•Caused a fumble.

P.J. Blue, Jemison

•Recorded 15.5 tackles, including two tackles for a loss and one sack, in a 26-19 loss to Bibb County.

•Recovered a fumble and returned it 10 yards.

Brandon Chapman, Isabella

•Intercepted two passes, including one returned for a touchdown, in a 35-14 win over Horseshoe Bend.

Adam Heflin, Verbena

•Scored his team’s only touchdown in a 46-7 loss to Loachapoka.

•Rushed 11 times for 61 yards.

Donnie Hoffman, Thorsby

•Rushed nine times for 67 yards in a 42-0 loss to Leeds.

Terrance Nolen, Billingsley

•Rushed 12 times for 132 yards and one touchdown in a 42-20 win over Sunshine.

Trent Ray, Chilton Christian

•Scored touchdowns on a kickoff return and on a run in 42-18 loss to Cullman Christian.

•Filled in for starting quarterback Zack Pittman after Pittman left the game with an injury.

Previous winners

•Week 1: Keyshawn Jemison, Jemison

•Week 2: Damian Mitchell, Maplesville

•Week 3: DeRodgus Campbell, Isabella