Carson High Football: Can Senators overcome Homecoming distractions?
Carson High football coach Blair Roman will see just how much a bye week and Homecoming have affected his team Friday when the Senators (4-2, 1-0) host Bishop Manogue (1-5, 1-0) Friday at 7 p.m.
“It is a distraction,” Roman said. “We had a good practice yesterday, and then all the activities start to happen. The concern of most head coaches is how the team is going to respond in the beginning of the game. Are we going to start fast or not? The kids need to put (Homecoming stuff) aside from 2:30 to 5 everyday.”
And, there have been a ton of activities. The annual lip sync contest was Tuesday night and CHS had comedy sketches on Wednesday at the Carson City Community Center. The bonfire is scheduled for tonight at the same time as the volleyball match at home against Damonte Ranch, and then the annual parade is Friday afternoon.
Carson is favored in the game, but the Miners are coming off an 18-13 win over Douglas, which snapped a season-opening five-game losing streak.
If the Senators take Manogue lightly, they won’t like the result.
The Miners have some offensive weapons in freshman QB Connor Noland (824 yards passing), running back Wes Farnsworth (381 yards, 2 TDs) and receiver Zack Teats, who leads the region in receiving yards with 359 yards. The Miners’ problem is they haven’t been able to finish drives, averaging just 10 points a game.
Manogue gives up 26 a game, and the key will be whether the Miners can play enough defense to hold Carson’s offense in check.
Nolan Shine will join Gerardo Labato at inside linebacker for tonight’s game. Ikela Lewis,who has started every game at the other inside linebacker and has 59 tackles, has been moved to outside linebacker.
“We are moving Nolan back to his old spot,” Roman said.
“We feel his aggressiveness will really help us.
“Playing outside, you have to be able to contain the run and the pass, and Nolan did that, and so can Ikela. We ask a lot of guys who play that spot.”
Shine’s move does mean more playing time at quarterback for junior Joe Nelson, who usually gets a series or two a game. Roman said the bye week helped with Nelson’s development.
“We’ve been able to rep Joe up the last two weeks,” Roman said. “We’ve been working on his reads along with other things. It’s been time well spent.”
Nelson is 7 for 16 passing for 198 yards and two scores, including the game-winner to Asa Carter two weeks ago against Damonte Ranch.
Shine is 31 for 73 passing for 431 yards. He does have seven interceptions and just four TDs.
Center Corey Jasper is questionable for Friday’s game, meaning Austin Ackerman would get the start.
“He (Ackerman) has done a good job,” Roman said.
This is a strange year for the Senators, who have not one, but two bye weeks this season. The next one will come the week before the season-finale against Douglas on Nov. 7. Next season Roman said the team will not have a midyear bye, just the one before the Douglas game.
Roman said he’s not interested in filling that date. No sense risking an injury before you play your biggest rival.
The Carson coach said he would start working on next year’s schedule right after the season ends. Obviously Roman is hoping that’s not until mid-December.