40 in 30: Southern Choctaw Indians

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GILBERTOWN, Ala. -- After a 10-win season in 2016 that saw Southern Choctaw advance all the way to the 2A quarterfinals, the Indians stumbled to a 4-6 finish in 2017. Head coach Jeremy Noland says inexperience played a big part in last season's step back.

"Last year, we played a lot of young guys" Noland said. "A lot of freshman starters on both sides of the ball."

"We had a good team last year" said Southern Choctaw senior linebacker Christian Pope. "We just had some young folks, but they got some playoff experience, so I expect us to be better this year."

Entering his 10th season with the Indians football team, Noland has emphasized participation and effort in the summer workouts leading up to the 2018 season.

"We've worked hard this summer" Noland said. "We've been working out three days a week. We're really excited and ready to get the season kicked off."

Southern Choctaw returns a large chunk of the underclassmen that played for the Indians in 2018, with playoff experience under their belt as well. Noland and his team have high expectations on the football field this fall.

"We're just going to do the same thing we've been doing" Pope said. "We're going to go pretty far in the playoffs."

"We have the same backfield coming back" Noland said. "Defensively we should be improved, so my expectations are higher than they were last year."

Southern Choctaw opens the 2018 season on August 31st on the road at Marengo.