Bulldogs, Griffins provide big game feel

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 30, 2011



You might say Friday’s game between Lutcher and host Dutchtown has something of a big game feel to it.

Dutchtown is ranked third in Class 5A. Lutcher is ranked fourth in 4A. The game will be televised on Cox Sports Television.

Lutcher coach Tim Detillier’s spread offense and 3-3-5 defensive alignment is a testament to his commitment to putting speed on the field — the coach is often fond of saying that if he had the choice of being bigger, faster or stronger, he’d choose faster.

That is, if you have to choose at all, of course.

“They have all three,” said Detillier. “There’s no doubt that we’re the underdogs. They’re probably the best team on our schedule. At least, I hope they are.”

That seemed to be the case last season. Dutchtown defeated Lutcher in the 2010 season opener, 28-14, prior to the Bulldogs ending the regular season on a nine-game winning streak. The Griffins went on to be the top seed in the Class 5A playoffs, finishing as a state quarterfinalist after falling to Westgate.

When Detillier talks about bigger, faster and stronger, one name specifically leaps to his mind.

“Landon Collins!” he exclaimed when asked what his chief concern about Dutchtown would be.

Collins is a 6-foot-2-inch, 210 pound senior safety who is regarded as the state’s top recruit, rated as a five-star prospect by Rivals.

“He is a man,” said Detillier. “You have to be aware of where he is at all times. Because if you’re not, he’ll make you aware. He plays the game like he’s angry at something. When you watch him play, you know why he’s the top recruit.

“We’ve coached against Ed Reed and Laron Landry,” said Detillier. “And there are people who think he’s better.”

Lutcher’s Daniel Taylor rushed for 119 yards on 12 carries last year against Dutchtown. Ruston Matherne passed for 67 yards and a score while splitting time.

“You work harder, put the extra time in, especially on special teams,” said Detillier. “We’ll need to be perfect … and we’ll likely still need help. They’re that good.”

HAHNVILLE AT JESUIT – Hahnville opens the season early, as it will travel to face Jesuit on Thursday night.

Jesuit is the 10th ranked team in Class 5A, a year after falling to West Monroe in the Class 5A quarterfinals.

The Blue Jays will have the experience edge on Hahnville, bringing back 11 starters as opposed to just four for the Tigers.

HHS coach Lou Valdin said that his young team is in a difficult spot, playing on the road against a squad accustomed to Thursday night action. Eliminating mistakes will be of utmost importance.

“Jesuit doesn’t make mistakes,” said Valdin. “They’re very polished and they’re used to executing that offense. They show up, play soundly and make you pay for your mistakes.”

Valdin said he doesn’t believe his young team is ready for a spot like this. The goal, above anything else, is simply to play better than it did in its previous performance, its 33-8 jamboree win over St. James.

SOUTH LAFOURCHE AT DESTREHAN — The Wildcats’ defense impressed all in its 14-6 jamboree win over Lutcher. A repeat performance would likely mean a 1-0 mark for DHS.

The Tarpons had a similar season to Destrehan a year ago. South Lafourche unexpectedly slipped out of the playoffs, finishing 4-6 after a 10-2 2009 campaign.

The Wildcats finished 3-7, but are expected to be a factor once again with a slate of now-seasoned collegiate prospects fueling those thoughts.