Player of the Week: James Wilson

Published 6:47 pm Tuesday, May 18, 2010

So the Tigers will be returning only six receptions from their 2009 state championship team. Offensively, that is probably the biggest concern Demopolis faced as it readied for a 10-day spring practice period.

Over the next two weeks, incumbent starting quarterback Ben Pettus proceeded to find his new favorite targets. He looked to a number of players, some successfully and others not. But from the very beginning, he found a reliable option in junior-to-be James Wilson.

As a sophomore, Wilson made his varsity mark with a number of big plays, including a 70-yard run in a tightly-contested playoff matchup. So the expectations were there for Wilson, who would shift to A-back for the spring session.

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The move proved to be a good one for Wilson, who flexed his abilities both running and receiving while make play after play throughout the spring.

Then came Friday night’s jamboree event in Meridian. The Tigers’ offense looked sluggish early, showing itself incapable of moving the ball against host Meridian en route to a 14-0 loss. In the second game, however, DHS found some running room for DaMarcus James, a quest that was helped in part by Wilson’s ability to block on the edges and propensity for keeping the defense honest by making key receptions during the Tigers’ scoring drive. That march toward the end zone ultimately resulted in Wilson punching the ball in on a two-yard dive for Demopolis’ only score of the evening.

If Wilson continues to provide that level of effort and productivity, Demopolis will have little problem replacing the passing game production lost with the graduation of its top four receivers. Moreover, opposing defenses will be less able to load up the box in an effort to slow the Tiger running game. That makes Wilson a very important cog in the Demopolis machine.