Senior star leads stable of running backs in 2017

Published 3:59 pm Tuesday, July 18, 2017

If you’re a Bearcat running back and you lose control of the football this summer, prepare to run.

Coach Larry Cosby’s biggest message this season as Bainbridge’s running back coach is “protect the football.” There’s no excuses for fumbles and turnovers when a player controls the ball like he is supposed to.

Of course, with a stable of talented running backs and a new offensive system, Cosby is confident his players have what it takes to take care of the football and more.

“There are a lot of calls we have to make at different routes we have to run this year, so it’s a lot of learning, but they’re picking up on it pretty good,” Cosby said.

Leading Bainbridge’s ground game is senior Dameon Pierce, a name most opponents in Georgia are familiar with. Pierce has started all four seasons for the Bearcats, and has stated in other interviews how he plans to make the most of his final year in Bainbridge.

“He is a fun guy to coach,” Cosby said. “He picks up on things really quickly. He has a good football IQ.”

Many Division 1 schools have picked up on Pierce’s talents and offered him scholarships, including Auburn, Florida, Michigan and Stanford, to name a few.

But the all-time Bainbridge rushing leader isn’t alone in the backfield. Two Broadnax brothers, Rashad, a freshman, and Markel, a senior, bring a lot of competitive energy to running the football.

“I like Rashad Broadnax,” Cosby said. “He picks up on things quickly, too. He’s really smart and he loves the game as well. He and his brother Markel get kind of competitive back there.”

Rashad made waves in eighth grade to lead the middle school Bearcats to the fifth consecutive Southwest Georgia championship. Now in high school, Cosby expects him to get a few touches when the moments are right for it.

“We have some great talent there, so we are adding to the zone run and adding some gap schemes,” offensive coordinator Mike Harville said. “Also, just putting them out in routes so obviously we can get the ball out to our backs and into space a little bit, giving them a chance to advance the ball down the field.”

Harville said he is looking to use the running backs in a few different creative ways.

Senior Darius Adams along with juniors Randy Fillingame and Ralph Register are getting practice at the fullback position, Cosby added.

Check back next edition for a look at Bainbridge’s linebacker squad.