Saturday, August 21, 2010

Both Fergusons are keepers

I went to Butler High School's football opener in Winston-Salem Friday night against Mount Tabor. I love high school football, but rarely travel out of the Charlotte area to see it.

I made an exception this time because Butler -- the defending state champs in the biggest-school category -- has been involved in so much controversy this offseason.

Was glad I did. Here's the column that resulted on Riley Ferguson, the sophomore quarterback who has replaced All-American Christian LeMay as Butler's starter.

I knew Ferguson was good, having talked to Coach Mike Newsome about him. What I didn't know was how good his older brother Zach -- a junior, and Riley's elder by 19 months -- was. (Here's David Scott's game story about Butler's 27-14 win).

On Butler's very first play, Zach rescued a wobbly throw by Riley for a long gain. On Butler's fourth play, Newsome called a clever double pass, which ended up with Zach throwing a 33-yard strike to a downfield receiver.

Butler scored on that first drive, which led Riley to start jubilantly celebrating with Deion Walker. Newsome ran up to the younger Ferguson then.

"You can't do that yet!" he screamed. "You can't do that yet!"

And the warning about premature celebration was well-founded. Mount Tabor would quickly score twice and take a 14-7 lead that was nearly 21-7 but for a goal-line stand by Butler.

Then Butler grabbed control of the game, though, helped by both Fergusons (and thhe superb Deion Walker, who scored three touchdowns). Newsome said Zach Ferguson will be a "dominant player" for Butler, and it's hard not to agree. The two remind me a little of Blair and Justin Hardin, the identical twins (who would eventually become coaches themselves) who starred for Kannapolis A.L. Brown close to a decade ago.


Anonymous said...

Wonder if Newsome leaves after this season, will they stay in the rented apartment or go back home and play for Indy?

Anonymous said...

Ha! From the looks of it,indy needs all the help they can get.I see tommy knotthead dropped his opener last night.Tsk tsk...the indy bandwagon is long gone and butler is the new sheriff!!

Anonymous said...

Knotts no longer coaches at Independence. He now is in SC. Because of boundary issues and the new High School, I have no idea where all the Indy football players have gone (perhaps Butler?)

Anonymous said...

probably Dutch Fork - maybe staying with the school secretary

Anonymous said...

Hello Newsome

Anonymous said...

I love how these young players are given so much hype. Riley is a good 10th grade QB. Would someone please do a "where are they now" for all the local players who gets hyped up early in their high school career. Web sites, rankings and combines are ruining our kids...PERIOD!!

Anonymous said...

Way to go Butler.....All this talk about Indy, and how they aren't any good.... Well when Butler becomes STATE CHAMPS 7 YEARS IN A ROW, then you can run your mouth! Until then SHUT UP!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Its pretty funny how th picture attached is CHASE FERGUSON from SOUTH MECK. The Observer misses again.