Arp Tigers (1-2)

vs.

Troup Tigers (2-1)

7:30 p.m. Friday

Tiger Stadium, Troup

 

Coaches
  • Arp: Dale Irwin
  • Troup: Dennis Alexander

 

Last week
  • Arp: won 47-27 vs. Elysian Fields
  • Troup: won 40-16 at Quitman

 

Next week
  • Arp: at Garrison
  • Troup: vs. Huntington

 

Playmakers

Arp

  • RB Marcalas Johnson, Jr., 5-10, 180 (83 carries, 575 yards, 6 TD)
  • LB Kalik Hines, Jr., 5-10, 222 (36 tackles, 1 for loss)
  • WR/DB Thomas Reese, Soph. (5 catches, 144 yards, 2 TD; 16 tackles, 1 INT)
  • LB John Hawkins, Sr. (29 tackles, 1 INT, 1 forced fumble)
  • QB Chase Bonner, Sr. (11-of-26, 128 yards, 1 TD, 3 INT)
  • LB Gabe Reynolds, Sr. (20 tackles)

 

Troup

  • QB Blake Lynch, Jr., 6-3, 193
  • OL Tristen Walsworth, Sr., 6-0, 255
  • ATH Hitachi Lydia, Sr., 6-0, 170
  • RB D'Luis West, Jr., 5-8, 200
  • ATH Marquis Davis, Sr., 5-11, 210
  • RB Marcus Kincade, Jr., 6-0, 160

 

Just the facts
  • Arp and Troup, separated by just eight miles along Highway 135, have met 19 times since 1990 with Arp holding a 12-7 advantage.
  • The last time Arp began a season 1-3 was 2010, which ended with the Tigers reaching the third round of the playoffs.
  • Last season, the trio of running backs Marcalas Johnson, Mikechell Potts and Michael Roberson combined for 3,054 rushing yards.
  • Arp is 59-21 since 2007, reaching the state-quarterfinal round three times.
  • Since reaching the 2004 Class 2A Division II state championship game, Troup has gone 46-43 with just one playoff win.
  • Troup head coach Dennis Alexander ranks fourth in state history in wins, compiling a 333-128-11 record in 41-plus seasons. He trails only G.A. Moore, Gordon Wood and Phil Danaher.
  • Troup junior quarterback Blake Lynch has five FBS offers -- Baylor, Clemson, Mississippi State, Nebraska and TCU.
  • Arp and Troup have played every year since 1990, except 1998, 1999, 2010 and 2011.

 

Arp LB John Hawkins. (© Christopher R. Vinn, ETSN.fm)

Key matchup: Troup running game vs. Arp defensive front. Troup employs a strong rushing attack, led by mostly by the trio of quarterback Blake Lynch and running backs D'Luis West and Marcus Kincade. In last season's matchup against Arp -- a 33-13 Troup win -- Troup used eight different ball carriers to roll up 316 yards on the ground. Kincade and Lynch led the way by combining for 183 yards and a pair of scores. Expect more of the same Friday as Troup hopes to dominate at the line of scrimmage in much the same fashion as last season. Arp coach Dale Irwin said after the 2012 loss: “It all comes down to one thing: they physically whipped us. They physically just dominated us up front.”

Troup RB D'Luis West. (© Christopher R. Vinn, ETSN.fm)

Arp needs solid play out of its front line and linebacking corps, which has performed well thus far this season. Kalik Hines, John Hawkins and Gabe Reynolds have combined for 85 tackles in three games. While Lynch is more than capable of making plays through the air, Troup would like to dictate tempo with a fast and physical running game. If Arp can force Troup to become more one-dimensional, it will create more playmaking opportunities for a young but athletic Arp secondary.

Don't be surprised if: Friday night's game doesn't take too long to complete. Both teams love to run the football, and more often than not, they're pretty good at it. With that being said, each team has the capability to hurt opposing defense with big plays through the air. Whichever team can establish the strongest running game stands a better chance of catching the other off-guard by taking shots downfield in one-on-one situations. Everything points to a Troup victory, but rarely do rivalry games go as scripted.