The North Jackson football team set out this week to learn from last week’s rivalry loss to Scottsboro and move on to more pressing matters — securing a playoff berth.
The Chiefs resume play in Class 4A Region 7 this week with a trip to Fairview Friday at 7 p.m.
Head coach Chandler Tygard has stressed to North Jackson (1-4, 1-2) how it still in the midst of a playoff chase in a region that has been unpredictable from week to week.
“As bad as it seems, we’ve still got a chance to win or tie for the region (title) and to get in (the playoffs),” he said. “We’ve just got to go win some region games.”
Friday’s game is the 14th all-time meeting between North Jackson and Fairview. North Jackson is 13-0 against the Aggies, including a 78-12 loss to the Chiefs in Stevenson last season.
“It’s going to be a challenge,” Tygard said of the rematch. “It’s on the road and they’re mad — North Jackson destroyed them last year, so I’m sure they’ve got revenge on their minds.”
Fairview (3-2, 2-1) is coming off a bye last week, having last played Sept. 20 when it lost 31-21 to region-leading and No. 10-ranked Priceville. The Aggies have region wins over DAR 62-41 and St. John Paul II 24-19.
The Aggies’ main offensive weapons are running backs Tyvn Ellis and Tyler Simmons and quarterback Parker Martin. Ellis had a 300-yard, six-touchdown game earlier this season.
“They were a young team last year that has about everybody back,” Tygard said.
Fairview runs a version of the spread offense similar to North Jackson’s.
“They’re the closest team to us (offensively) we’ve seen,” said Tygard, adding it helps the defense’s preparation. “They see it every day and understand why teams run certain plays and you can get a better scout team look because (scout team players are) know (the offense).”