Webb aims to improve under second-year coach Midgette
After Oxford’s Webb High School football team finished 1-6 in the 3-A Big Eight Conference in 2013, those affiliated with the program are hoping for a stronger 2014.
More specifically, the Warriors are looking to improve one key area.
“Most definitely, we needed to get better at throwing the football,” said second-year Webb head coach Tony Midgette. “We had a first-time quarterback last year. We haven’t had anyone step up in the starting role yet. But I think we have improved throwing the ball this summer.”
There’s no decision on who’ll be the Warriors’ starting quarterback, but three players are competing for the role: senior Michael Phillips, junior Alex Weaver and sophomore Trevion Harris.
Webb went 3-8 in Midgette’s first season at the helm, with just six touchdowns and 28 receiving yards per game.
That didn’t get it done in a Big Eight that featured powerhouse conference and state 3-AA champion Southern High School, which went 14-2 overall and 7-0 in the league.
The Big Eight also features state playoff regulars Orange, Northwood and Chapel Hill high schools.
Emerging center stage, however, was Gearl Majors, the 6-foot-3, 288-pound defensive lineman who’s among the returning players. Majors has caught the attention of several schools, including Arkansas State, Georgia Tech, East Carolina, Virginia Military, Elon and UNC Charlotte, Midgette said.
Majors hasn’t committed to a college but is coming off a season in which he averaged four tackles per game, with 21 solo tackles and 10 assists in seven games.
Majors, Jonathan Harris, Sayvon Davis and Luther Satterfield are projected to start on the defensive line. The starting defensive backs are Lionel Fields, Derrick Daniel, Shammond Chambers and Donte Brodie. Brodie played in six games as a junior and was in on 14 solo tackles.
The offensive line will include Jacquis Thorton, Rakym Winstead and Jared Webb.
Midgette’s confidence in his team’s improvements is tempered by reality regarding the expected Big Eight champ.
“Southern Durham (is) the (defending) state champions, and they’re heavily favored,” Midgette said.
He might have added that a veteran Northwood team bent on providing a winning send-off to retiring coach Bill Hall and an always-tough Orange bunch will be in the mix, as well.
Despite the difficult finish, several players are being courted to continue into college football. Midgette said Football Bowl Subdivision schools have shown interest in Warriors including Davis, Deshawn Lewis, Brandon Throckmorton and Tevin Evans, who had 75 rushing yards in four games last season.
“Throckmorton’s caught the attention of St. Augustine’s and some smaller schools in North Carolina,” Midgette said.
Oxford Webb plays its first game on Aug. 22 against county rival Granville Central before meeting Rocky Mount high School a week later. The Warriors get a shot at Southern on Oct. 31.
That was the sixth in a series of 17 previews of area high school football programs. The series will appear daily through Friday, Aug. 22, opening night for high school football.