In high school football it’s pretty rare to get a little pre-game back and forth between two coaches, but we are lucky enough to have some of that heading into tonight’s showdown between second-ranked Covington and sixth-ranked Milan.

Thanks to my buddy Victor Parkins over at the Milan-Mirror Exchange, it was relayed to me that Milan head coach Carl Diffee said the following: “This is the best Covington football team they’ve had in over a decade.”

So, of course, I relayed this information to Covington head coach J.R. Kirby. He chuckled a little and responded thusly: “I can’t believe he said this is the best team we’ve had in a decade. Three (Covington) teams this decade have gone to the state finals and we haven’t done that. Do we have a really good team? Yeah. Do they have a really good team? Yeah.”


Calling that a war of words is certainly an exaggeration, but it does make tonight’s game, which very well may decide the Region 7-3A champ, a little more interesting.

Here’s a look at that game as well as previews for Brighton-Arlington and Rosemark-Trinity Christian Academy:

What: Covington (6-0) vs. Milan (4-1)

Where: Covington High School

When: Friday at 7 p.m.

Chargers to watch: RB Marcus Hayes, QB Carson Ruffin, RB Eumorrion Flowers, RB Jamarion Dowell, LB Lareko Burton, WR Dalton Dickerson

Story lines: For the fourth straight week, Covington is ranked second in the Associated Press Class 3A state poll. The Chargers received one first-place vote. Alcoa received the other 15 … On paper at least, this is the toughest matchup of the season so far for the Chargers. Milan is ranked sixth in the state. The Bulldogs’ only loss of the season came in Week 1 vs. Peabody, which is ranked first in the state in Class 2A … While the Covington rushing attack deservedly gets most of the attention, wideout Dalton Dickerson has one very impressive stat. He’s caught seven passes this year and five of them have gone for touchdowns.

What: Brighton (2-4) vs. Arlington (3-3)

Where: Arlington High School

When: Friday at 7 p.m.

Cardinals to watch: QB Nick Harvell, RB Braxton Sharp, RB Ty Stark, TE Bryce Chaco, QB Tyler Todd

Story lines: Arlington has played one of the toughest schedules in West Tennessee. The Tigers have already played Evangelical Christian School, Houston and Memphis University School, dropping all three … Arlington beat Brighton 42-7 last season … Since beating Millington in Week 3, the Cardinals have dropped four straight.

What: Tipton-Rosemark (1-3) vs. Trinity Christian Academy (3-2)

Where: Tipton-Rosemark

When: Friday at 7 p.m.

Rebels to watch: QB Payne Fullen, RB Zak Vinson, WR Aiden Sprenkle, WR Jalen Hurt, OL Heath Harrald

Story lines: If the Rebels plan on making the playoffs for an eighth straight season, they will likely need to win this crucial DII-A-West game. TRA beat the Lions 61-38 last season … While several other players have made contributions, Payne Fullen clearly the main man on offense. In just four games he had thrown for 302 yards and rushed for 311 more. Zak Vinson, with 130 yards, is the team’s second-leading rusher.

Jeff Ireland
Author: Jeff Ireland