Listening to outside conversation about a losing streak — or even a winning streak — can be detrimental to a football team, Raider coach Randell Owens said.
So Owens said it’s important that his players not get too caught up in the talk about the team as it lost its last three games.
“So that’s the challenge, just trying to get them to realize that fans really don’t have anything to do with the game one way or another,” Owens said.
That said, the Raiders fell 28-7 to Habersham Central last Friday to drop them to 2-4 in region play.
Not making matters any easier, now, is vastly-improved Loganville (4-1), which the Raiders play Friday.
The always-physical Red Devils have added the dimension of speed this year and that’s been bad news for the rest of the region as the Walton County school has gotten off to a fast 4-1 start. “Coach (Eric) Godfree said this is the first time that he’s had any speed,” Owens said.
Things are certainly starting to go the Red Devils’ way in year five of Godfree’s tenure at Loganville.
In search of their first winning season since 1999, the Red Devils are just three points away from being undefeated. The Red Devils’ only loss came to Salem (10-7).
Just 4-6 a year ago, Loganville handed region-leading Clarke Central its only loss of the season and the Red Devils also knocked off Cedar Shoals. Owens said Godfrey simply has more weapons at his disposal with talent at the skill positions.
“He has got some bullets in his gun that he didn’t have in the past,” Owens said.
As for Madison County, the Raiders returned to the practice field Monday with the challenges of the season in mind. Four games remain this season.
“They practiced hard,” Owens said. “They worked good. They’re kids. They’re disappointed with the lack of success. But they’re not ready to call it a year yet.”
NOTES: Madison County leads 4-0 in the series with Loganville, but those four wins haven’t come easy. The Raiders have won by eight or less points in the last three meetings.
“It is never easy,” Owens said. “We have never had an easy game with Loganville.”