MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Prep Sports

November 23, 2006

To right a wrong?

MHS counts on DB in attempt to avenge loss

Whatever Jenks tries to on offense tonight in the Class 6A semifinals, Muskogee’s ready for it and that’s because of Carlos Smith.

The MHS coaches know their most consistent player is on defense.

Smith, a 6-foot-2, 195-pound senior, lines up at free safety for the Roughers in the 7:30 p.m. game at Tulsa Union Tuttle Stadium.

Not only does he contribute with his hard-hitting tackling ability, but his leadership of the secondary also proves valuable and that comes from starting for three years on the varsity.

“Jenks will throw a lot of formations at us and Carlos is in charge of getting us lined up,” defensive coordinator/defensive back coach David Heath said. “He knows everything we do and that takes a lot of mental work. Carlos is a very smart player.

“His aggression — he craves contact — and leadership on the field make him an outstanding player.”

Smith is ready for the challenge as Jenks likes to run the bootleg. It will be his job to defend the play and then go make tackles when the ball gets past the line of scrimmage.

“Jenks runs the bootleg better than other schools because that quarterback (Mark Ginther) has a pretty good arm,” Smith said. “He scrambles well and he keeps the ball in his hands for a while before he gets tackled.”

Ginther, a 6-2, 175-pound junior, has completed 158 of 250 passes for 1,846 yards and 22 touchdowns. He’s also run for 269 yards and six more TDs.

Jenks coach Allan Trimble has seen Smith on tape enough to be impressed with him.

“All you see of him is getting off the pile (after a tackle),” Trimble said. “If it’s a run or pass, he’s on the pile. He’s very active and plays hard. He’s also a skillful kid.”

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