Carroll enjoys a bye week before it resumes Sept. 25 at Abilene. Head coach Hal Wasson said the bulk of the fundamental work will be performed between Tuesday and Thursday.
But the team will get two important players back. Junior right tackle Henry Klinge (broken right leg) has been cleared to return as has junior defensive back Jason Davis (broken collarbone).
With Klinge’s return, it solidifies the offensive line. Klinge was the starting the right tackle in spring football before he went down. Davis will add support to what is already a pretty deep secondary between senior defensive back Obi Eboh and junior safety Robert Barnes.
“We just have to keep ourselves in a position where we have to get better at both our blocking and tackling,” Wasson said. “As a young team, we have to trust ourselves and become more and more disciplined. We’ve got to keep maturing.”
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Holmes the unquestioned starting QB
When junior Mason Holmes directed his team to a come-from-behind 34-30 victory at Tulsa Union on Sept. 4, it ended any questions about whether the Carroll QB situation had been settled.
Holmes started against Midland Lee and led Carroll to a 52-14 win. Through his two starts, Holmes has completed 68 percent of his passes for 647 yards along with seven touchdowns. Carroll trailed Union, 23-7, at the half before Holmes directed the comeback.
“Mason is highly competitive and he’s a winner,” Wasson said. “He’s tough. He stays in the pocket, goes through his progressions and has a live arm. He’s got good running ability [but Holmes hasn’t had much of an opportunity to run].
“Montana [Murphy] was the backup the year before, but it was just hard to see the separation until we saw each of them in a game. Mason saw the window and took advantage. He didn’t tap on the door. He knocked it down. He got a lot of reps in the spring and with them in the summer. There’s that ‘it’ factor with them.”
Why the Dragon maker works
The Dragon maker offseason conditioning program is intense and puts players through enormous tests. And while none of it is easy, there’s going to be a payoff.
Carroll saw that in the comeback win at Tulsa Union. One of the things that Union coach Kirk Fridrich told the Broken Arrow Ledger is that his team wore down and didn’t have much left by the time the game ended.
That wasn’t the case with the Dragons. Wasson noted how his team didn’t falter in four quarters. Of course, the Dragons were just seconds away from starting the season at 2-0 but fell short in their 20-14 loss to Austin Westlake in the season opener.
“It’s a combination of we knew we were going into a real hostile environment and the kids just have to be resilient,” Wasson said. “The key is being patient in adversity. We just had a bunch of young players who had to conquer some things. They can’t be afraid to make a mistake. But we matured.”
Senior wide receiver Zach Farrar leads all Carroll receivers in yards per catch at 17.5. That’s a good sign because he could be the big target the Carroll coaches need his presence to help with Holmes. Farrar missed half of the 2014 season with a broken jaw…. In case you missed it, Eboh has verbally committed to Texas and Barnes has committed to Oklahoma. Eboh cannot sign his letter of intent until Feb. 3. Barnes cannot sign until 2017.