The Paris News from Paris, Texas on August 27, 1987 · Page 42
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The Paris News from Paris, Texas · Page 42

Paris, Texas
Issue Date:
Thursday, August 27, 1987
Page 42
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'0 The Paris News, Thurs., Aug. 27, 1987 Armed and ready at ETSU Ex-Wildcat Tidwell locked in 2-man battle for QB job Rii UII I HAiC"n*n*T * WES TIDWELL — Former Paris High quarterback set an ETSU bench press record for quarterbacks by lifting 285 pounds He and junior Royce Slechta are coach Eddie Vowell's quarterback candidates. (Photo by Dee Edwards) ^^_ ~ - —« . UMUV TT^^IX, nt u* VMYC a aui Davis works for a better O-State By BILL HAISTEN Sports Editor COMMERCE — Be it 3 a.m. or 3 p.m., Wes Tidwell has access to a wealth of knowledge and experience. His roommate at East Texas State University is senior quarterback Mike Trigg, who will rest a surgically-repaired knee this fall. While Trigg endures a redshirt season, Tidwell and junior Royce Slechta have emerged as ETSU's candidates at QB. Tidwell is a sophomore and quarterbacked a Paris High offense keen on sweeps and misdirection. Slechta is more experienced — when Trigg injured a shoulder early in 1985, Slechta came on as a freshman to pass for 1,165 yards and 16 touchdowns in seven games. But, with two weeks left to settle on a starter, head coach Eddie Voweil says the competition's a toss-up. And keep in mind Voweil is hunting for a starter who can help repair a club that lost nine straight games last season. "Wes and Royce each have something they do particularly well," Voweil says. "I like Wes because he's more disciplined ... he won't do anything silly that'll get you beat. "Wes is a big, strong, intelligent kid and he looked good in the spring game. But we haven't decided who the starter will be. It's a dogfight." Tidwell isn't as big as he was six weeks ago, but he is stronger than ever. Last week, he broke a school When Brent Davis finally was allowed to come in and play, the good times ceased to roll at Oklahoma State. For three straight seasons, the third being Davis's redshirt freshman season, the Cowboys had contended for the Big Eight championship and were rewarded with bowl bids. Davis became a real Cowboy in 1986, but OSU was crippled by injuries and a flat offense. The result was a 6-5 record and no bowl. "It was a tough year," Davis says. "We thought we had a good team, but we didn't get any breaks. This year, if a bunch of people don't get hurt again, I think we'll be back where we were." Davis said he signed with 0-State knowing he'd be immediately red- shirted. "I was small out of high school, about 214 pounds," he said. "It was understood that I'd be red- shirted. But I learned a lot." Like plain survival. His job as a redshirt offensive guard was to fill a place on the scout-team offense. He was a 214-pounder headed up with the likes of Leslie O'Neal, last year's NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year, and John Washington, now a member of the New York Giants. Davis has steadily grown, from 214 pounds to 235 last year to 255 now. And he's improved'his 40-yard dash time from 5.2 (high school) to 5.04. He is projected as a back-up to junior Chris Stanley at left guard. "We've got excellent backs and receivers. If the offensive line comes around, we'll play with anyone," Davis said. "I made one visit after my senior year, and that was to OSU. After I saw the school, I knew this was where I wanted to be. Now I'd like to help us win some games." — BUI Haisten BRENT DAVIS Johnson moves from QB to DB with Abilene Christian TODD 'JOHNSON • On Nov. 7, Abilene Christian plays at football at East Texas State University. Paris High's 1985 quarterback, Wes Tidwell, may be ETSU's starter at QB. Paris High's 1986 quarterback, Todd Johnson, is projected as a regular at a cornerback position at Abilene. "I told Wes I'd be coming after him,." Johnson laughs. "Wes told me I'd have to make the traveling squad first. I told him that won't be a problem." Johnson capped a three-year varsity career by directing Paris High to a district championship . lastSseasbh:. HeYdid.' football letter of intent with Abilene. "I'm sure there will be some playing time for me this year," Johnson says. "They recruited me to play cornerback, and they lost all their cornerbacks last year. I ran and lifted weights all summer, so I'm ready to go to work." He'll be joined at Abilene by wide receiver Tony Hill, whose 45 career catches ranks No. 2 on the Paris High all-time receiving list. Johnson stands 6-1 and, at 187 pounds, has dropped 10 pounds since basketball season. He will study accounting at ACU and plans Parisians in College When the 1987 season begins, 12 Paris- area athletes will be included on various college football rosters. Here is the current list of homegrown college football players: Wes Tidwell {PHS), sophomore quarterback, East Texas State. Brent Davis (PHS), sophomore guard, Oklahoma State. Robert Milfon (PHS), junior defensive lineman, Kansas Wesleyan. Carl Bradford (PHS), senior defensive end, Arkansas. Craig Jones (North Lamar), sophomore quarterback, Arkansas- Monticello. Sidney Bradford (PHS), junior defensive lineman. North Texas State. Richard Bartel (PHS), senior defensive end, Abilene Christian. Brian Callahan (PHS), junior linebacker, Cameron University. Todd Johnson (PHS), freshman cor- nerback, Abilene Christian. Kevin Atnip, (North Lamar), sophomore offensive lineman, Arkansas-Monticello. Marty Martin (PHS), freshman offensive lineman, Houston. Tony Hill (PHS), freshman wide receiver, Abilene Christian. record by bench pressing 285 pounds, the most ever by an ETSU quarterback. He has grown to 6-4 and carries 195. "I was up to about 210, 215 in the middle of summer, but I needed to slim down before practice got started," he says Tidwell says Trigg's guidance has been a plus. "He's my trainer. We watch films together, discuss certain situations. He's a big help to me. Mike's a great quarterback, too, and he will be again when his knee's OK." Paris High's wing-T offense was both helpful and detrimental in Tidwell's adapting to Vowell's philosophy, which is to pass and pass and pass. "Paris likes to sprint out and throw. That wasn't really my sstyle, because I don't have blazing speed. I'm more of a pocket passer. Here we go with straight five- and seven-step drops," Tidwell said. "But it was good for me to play at Paris because the coaches put a lot of emphasis on fakes. A good fake is just like throwing an added block. So I feel I'm ahead of some other quarterbacks in that regard." Tidwell said he won't be disheartened should Siechta win the starting job. "But 1 also think we're neck-and-neck right now. The coaches say it's 50-50. "It would be hard to Coach Voweil to make me the starter just because I had a good spring. The way I see it, I'm going to have to perform much better than Royce to turn Coach Vowell's head." 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