/seasons/2011/contrib/20110822rn8cq6

Defensive Backs Could Lead Stout Choctaw Defense in 2011

More news about: Mississippi College

CLINTON, MS - In the coming weeks, we will take a chance to preview each position on the field for the Choctaws as we head toward the season opening "Backyard Brawl" on September 3rd against Millsaps.  We invite MC fans to take a look and get more acclimated with the 2011 group of Choctaws.

The schedule will be as follows:

Quarterbacks – August 15th
Running Backs – August 16th
Wide Receivers / Tight Ends – August 17th
Offensive Line – August 18th
Defensive Line – August 19th
Linebackers – August 20th
Secondary – TODAY
Special Teams – TOMORROW
Offense – August 24th
Defense – August 25th
Overall – August 26th

When you look for accolades on the defensive side of the ball, you don't have to look any further than the safety position for the Choctaws.  Senior Dustin Retherford (Pace, FL, Pace High School) is the only returning All-ASC performer from a season ago and senior Luke Petitto (Amite, LA, Oak Forest Academy) earned All-Region honors last season and has been selected as a preseason All-American by the D3 Senior Classic.

Retherford finished third on the team in 2010 with 48 tackles, including 27 solo stops.  Dustin had his best game of the season with three interceptions and a pass breakup in a victory over Howard Payne.  For his efforts, Retherford was named ASC Defensive Player of the Week and earned an Honorable Mention All-ASC selection.

Petitto stands as Retherford's running mate in the defensive backfield and comes off of a breakout season in 2010.  Luke led the Choctaws with five interceptions and finished second on the team with 64 tackles and 9.0 tackles for loss.  Petitto recorded double-digits in tackles in two games and earned a Second Team All-South Region selection by D3Football.com despite not earning an All-Conference selection.

Defensive Coordinator Chad Walker discussed his senior safeties, "Luke is as tough as they come.  He is a hard-nose player in the backfield and leads the defense vocally and emotionally.  Dustin is a solid football player and you can expect him to be in the right spot at the right time.  I've stepped into a good situation having two senior leaders at the safety position."

While the Choctaws have two seniors at safety, they also have depth provided by some experience and youth.  Junior Horace Allen (Vicksburg, MS, Vicksburg High School) played in nine games for the Choctaws last season and finished fourth on the team with 39 tackles.  Allen will be a solid contributor that will help lead the young guys at the position.

Sophomore Dylan Klibert (LaPlace, LA, St. Charles Catholic) and freshman Garrett Horst (Spanish Fort, AL, Spanish Fort High School) have seen a lot of playing time in the preseason and could push for a starting spot against the experienced seniors.  Klibert is a physical player that makes big hits from the defensive backfield.  Horst has been a pleasant surprise in camp as he has pushed his for playing time as a rookie.

The cornerback position boasts one of the top players at the position in the conference in Jarrad Craine (Brandon, MS, Hinds Community College).  The senior finished sixth on the team with 37 tackles and recorded only one interception while quarterbacks were forced to throw the other direction in most cases.  Craine is a solid player that can shut down one side of the field.

Walker commented on Craine, "He has the ability to be really, really good.  He's a solid player that makes the right play and can tackle well on the outside.  He forces the offense to account for his presence and allows the rest of our defense to make plays."

Sophomore Darren Watts (New Orleans, LA, West Jefferson High School) is making the move to corner from the safety position his freshman year.  Watts will give the Choctaws to sizeable corners that will be able to defend the bigger receivers MC will face this season.  Watts played in the final six games of the season last year and recorded 12 tackles.  Darren picked off a pass in the victory over Sul Ross State.

Behind the two returning corners, the Choctaws have several players that are pushing for the backup positions.  Freshman Raeon Jones (Alexandria, LA, Pineville High School) has been impressive in the preseason and will push for significant playing time in his rookie campaign.  Jones was a First Team All-Cenla selection and an All-District performer while picking off five passes and recovering five fumbles as a senior.

The Choctaws have five other freshmen that have shown out in the preseason.  James Barton (Baton Rouge, LA, Redemptorist High School)J.C. Carey (Bossier City, LA, Parkway High School)Dantavion Harris (Minden, LA, Minden High School)Jesse Harris (Dehlco, LA, Louisiana Delta Community College), and Milton Shelton (Minden, LA, Minden High School) have huge upsides as the future of the position.

Coach Walker commented on his young guys, "We have a lot of freshmen that have  a lot of potential at the cornerback position.  They all have great cover skills and once they learn our defense, we will have a formidable group back there.  Some will push for immediate playing time, but I think it will really help them to watch our experienced guys in Craine and Watts.

"For the defensive backfield as a whole, we have some solid starters.  They provide a great deal of leadership for our young guys, and they have bought into our system.  In our returners you have some real playmakers.  I'm also excited about our young guys.  They have a lot of promise and tremendous up-sides as we head toward the season.

Tomorrow we will preview the special teams.

Sep. 23: All times Eastern
Final
at Framingham State 50, Massachusetts Maritime 7
Video Box Score
Final
Muhlenberg 56, at Juniata 40
Video Box Score
Final
at Dean 25, Becker 10
Box Score
Final
Salisbury 27, at TCNJ 7
Box Score
Final
MIT 38, at Catholic 21
Video Box Score
Final
Merchant Marine 56, at Maine Maritime 31
Video Box Score
Final
at Hobart 34, Endicott 17
Video Video Box Score
Final
at Morrisville State 44, Nichols 22
Video Box Score
Final
at Delaware Valley 27, Stevenson 7
Video Box Score Recap
Final
at Albright 9, Widener 7
Video
Final
Christopher Newport 16, at Montclair State 8
Video
Final
at Westminster (Pa.) 41, Bethany 14
Video
Final
Middlebury 41, at Bowdoin 14
Video Box Score
Final
Williams 24, at Colby 7
Video Box Score
Final
Amherst 36, at Hamilton 6
Video Box Score
Final
Ursinus 35, at Moravian 17
Video Box Score
Final
Trinity (Conn.) 51, at Bates 0
Video Box Score
Final
at LaGrange 38, Brevard 28
Video Box Score
Final
Geneva 33, at Thiel 24
Video
Final
at Plymouth State 37, Mass-Dartmouth 7
Video Box Score
Final
Kean 28, at Southern Virginia 14
Video Box Score
Final
Frostburg State 24, at Rowan 10
Video Box Score
Final
Union 17, at Curry 14
Video Box Score
Final
at Carnegie Mellon 37, Thomas More 17
Video Box Score
4th - 2:55
37 Lycoming
41 King's
Video Live stats Audio Audio Tickets
Final
at Western New England 21, Husson 14
Video
Final
Johns Hopkins 41, at Dickinson 10
Video Box Score
Final
at DePauw 51, Wooster 24
Video Box Score
Final
at Ohio Wesleyan 37, Allegheny 21
Video
Final
at Misericordia 43, Wilkes 14
Video
Final
at Alfred 45, Rochester 7
Video
Final
Wesley 66, at William Paterson 0
Video
Final
at N.C. Wesleyan 35, Maryville (Tenn.) 25
Video Box Score
Final
Huntingdon 31, at Ferrum 28
Video Video
Final - OT
at McDaniel 27, Gettysburg 20
Video Video Preview Box Score
Final
at Buffalo State 33, RPI 21
Video Box Score Recap
Final
Franklin and Marshall 27, at Susquehanna 24
Video Box Score
Final
at Denison 45, Oberlin 17
Video
Final
at Northwestern (Minn.) 10, Westminster (Mo.) 7
Video
Final
at Eureka 44, Crown 20
Video Box Score
Final
at Lebanon Valley 24, FDU-Florham 14
Video
4th - 08:18
14 John Carroll
40 Heidelberg
Video Live stats Audio Audio
4th Quarter - 7:10
7 Otterbein
35 Ohio Northern
Video Preview Live stats Audio
4th - 02:04
7 Baldwin Wallace
55 Mount Union
Video Preview Preview Live stats Audio Audio
4th - 04:05
14 Defiance
37 Rose-Hulman
Video Preview Live stats
5:46, 4th quarter
25 Muskingum
42 Marietta
Video Live stats Audio
3rd - 9:59
42 Franklin
16 Bluffton
Preview Live stats
3rd - 10:07
21 Anderson
57 Hanover
Video Live stats
4th - 07:53
31 Mount St. Joseph
14 Manchester
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
Worcester State at Westfield State
Video Live stats
3rd - 04:15
6 Coast Guard
6 Norwich
Video Live stats Audio
4th - 14:51
14 Bridgewater State
31 Fitchburg State
Video Live stats Preview
3rd - 11:10
28 Wittenberg
11 Kenyon
Video Preview Preview Live stats
3rd - 9:45
21 Hiram
16 Wabash
Video Video Live stats Tickets
Halftime
41 North Central (Ill.)
7 Millikin
Video Live stats Audio Audio
2:00 PM
Sewanee at Millsaps
Video Preview Live stats Audio
3rd - 01:20
9 Birmingham-Southern
21 Rhodes
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
Austin at Hendrix
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
Greenville at Martin Luther
Video Live stats
15:00 4th Q
35 Chapman
21 Trinity (Texas)
Video Preview Live stats
2:00 PM
Buena Vista at Loras
Video Video Live stats
15:00 4th
13 Washington U.
24 Wartburg
Video Preview Live stats
3rd - 7:35
7 Hamline
37 Gustavus Adolphus
Video Live stats Live stats
3rd - 06:58
35 Augsburg
14 Carleton
Audio Live stats Video
3:37 3RD
7 St. Olaf
57 Bethel
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
Dubuque at Luther
Video Live stats
8:49 3rd Q
17 Nebraska Wesleyan
28 Central
Video Live stats Audio
2:00 PM
Simpson at Coe
Video Live stats Audio
3rd - 7:55
19 Wheaton (Ill.)
8 Elmhurst
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
St. Norbert at Grinnell
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
Ripon at Knox
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
Iowa Wesleyan at MacMurray
Video
3rd - 13:08
37 Hardin-Simmons
3 Howard Payne
Video Live stats Audio
2:00 PM
Southwestern at Louisiana College
Video
2:00 PM
Monmouth at Macalester
Video Live stats
3rd - 08:52
10 St. John's
17 St. Thomas
@ Target Field, Minneapolis
Live stats Preview Audio Audio Video
3rd - 08:11
3 WPI
28 Springfield
Video Live stats
3:00 PM
Beloit at Cornell
Video Live stats
4:00 PM
Utica at Brockport
Video Live stats
4:00 PM
St. John Fisher at Hartwick
Audio
4:00 PM
Carroll at UW-La Crosse
Video Live stats
1st - 10:44
0 Minnesota-Morris
0 St. Scholastica
Video Live stats
4:30 PM
UW-Eau Claire at George Fox
Video Preview Preview Preview Live stats Audio
5:00 PM
Salve Regina at Western Connecticut
Video Live stats
5:00 PM
Adrian at UW-Stevens Point
Video Live stats
6:00 PM
Tufts at Wesleyan
Video Preview Live stats
6:00 PM
Methodist at Averett
Video Live stats
6:00 PM
Centre at Berry
Video Preview Live stats Audio Tickets
7:00 PM
Waynesburg at Case Western Reserve
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
St. Vincent at Grove City
Box Score Live stats Audio
7:00 PM
North Park at Illinois Wesleyan
Video Live stats Audio
7:00 PM
Texas Lutheran at Mary Hardin-Baylor
Video Live stats Audio Audio
7:00 PM
Lakeland at UW-Platteville
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Carthage at Augustana
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Chicago at Illinois College
Video Preview Live stats
7:00 PM
McMurry at Sul Ross State
Audio
7:30 PM
Capital at Wilmington
Video Preview Live stats
8:00 PM
Lake Forest at Lawrence
Video Video
8:00 PM
Belhaven at East Texas Baptist
8:00 PM
Arizona Christian at Whittier
Video Live stats
Sep. 23: All times Eastern
Final
at Delaware Valley 27, Stevenson 7
Video Box Score Recap
Final
Wesley 66, at William Paterson 0
Video
Final
at Alfred 45, Rochester 7
Video
Final
Johns Hopkins 41, at Dickinson 10
Video Box Score
Final
Frostburg State 24, at Rowan 10
Video Box Score
4th - 08:18
14 John Carroll
40 Heidelberg
Video Live stats Audio Audio
4th - 02:04
7 Baldwin Wallace
55 Mount Union
Preview Live stats Audio Preview Video Audio
3rd - 11:10
28 Wittenberg
11 Kenyon
Video Preview Preview Live stats
3rd - 9:45
21 Hiram
16 Wabash
Video Video Live stats Tickets
3rd - 13:08
37 Hardin-Simmons
3 Howard Payne
Video Live stats Audio
Halftime
41 North Central (Ill.)
7 Millikin
Video Live stats Audio Audio
3rd - 7:55
19 Wheaton (Ill.)
8 Elmhurst
Video Live stats
3rd - 08:17
10 St. John's
17 St. Thomas
@ Target Field, Minneapolis
Live stats Preview Audio Audio Video
4:00 PM
Utica at Brockport
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Waynesburg at Case Western Reserve
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
North Park at Illinois Wesleyan
Video Live stats Audio
7:00 PM
Lakeland at UW-Platteville
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Texas Lutheran at Mary Hardin-Baylor
Video Live stats Audio Audio