2018 Pigskin Preview: Bethel Christian Academy
Two seasons ago, Bethel Christian Academy resurrected their football team. The Trojans dropped their first three games before winning a stunner over cross-town rival, Arendell Parrott Academy. BCA ran the table in their remaining games, capturing the NCISAA state championship.
Last season, the Trojans fell back to Earth, going 1-8 for a fourth place finish. With two seasons under his belt, Coach Brick Crowder hopes to get his team back on track. Crowder, overall, is 10-11 in his career at BCA.
“We lost a lot of seniors after that first year. We were a young football team with not a lot of depth. Then we got hit hard with injuries. All of that together goes into a 1-8 season,” Coach Crowder said. “The thing is, as injury plagued as we were, we were ahead of Northeast Academy 24-0, who eventually won the state championship. We lost that game 70-63. We also were ahead of the runner up in the championship, Halifax Academy, 18-0.”
“The thing is, it stunk that we had to bring up so many young guys, but those guys got experience. Because of that, they will be ready for this season,” Coach Crowder said. “Most of our team is sophomores and juniors. We have a lot of potential. They are young, but they are a year older and I expect that they will be ready to play.”
Michael Daniels, a sophomore who plays defensive end and tight end echoed those sentiments. “We’re going to be good. We’re going to come out and do our best. I think that this will be our best season since our first one here. We’re all very excited to go.”
Coach Crowder cited Daniels as one of his players to watch. “He is a good kids. He is 6’3” and plays a very physical game. He has good instincts for the game. He might not be the quickest, but he is he is ‘football fast’. He knows where the play is going to be down and is already there making it happen.”
One of the keys to the Trojans this year is going to be speed. “We’re going to be very fast. We have four running backs that can be 4.7 or 4.8, if not faster, in the 40 yard dash. We also have some defensive ends that can flat out run,” Crowder said.
Still, with a young team, there are still some question marks. “Our defense is still in flux. We have to see where they are going to be. Our first three, non-conference games are going to tell us a lot about who we are. Our guys will see where they fit in. But I really think we’re going to be a lot stronger than last year,” Crowder said.
Other players to look for this season are senior Cody Dunk. Last season, Dunk set a school record for touchdowns in a single game with six in that crazy shootout game against Halifax Academy. Zach Boyd is a sophomore running back who a lot of speed.
“Zach hates to lose. Even at practice, he goes all out,” Coach Crowder said. “And Cody can flat out run. He’s very exciting to watch.”
Bethel Academy opens their season up on Friday, August 24 against Halifax Academy. Their home opener is on September 7 against Northeast Academy.