The Woodlawn Panther Football team had a shortened season last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Panthers were only able to play four regular season games due to cancellations. The coaching staff and players are excited about the likelihood of a full season.
The Panthers finished the short season with a 2-3 overall record, but bring back talent at many positions on both sides of the ball.
The offense will be led by Junior Rickie Collins. The four star quarterback is a two-year starter with plenty of weapons to get the ball to offensively. Senior running back Amani Givens, Senior wide receiver Jaylon Henry, and Senior wide receiver Kyle Jones are looking to build upon last season’s success. Junior wide receiver Clayton Adams will be a weapon on offense as well as special teams.
Collins will be protected this year by Seniors Tylan Day and Jeron Lewis, along with Junior Roy Brackins.
Defensively, the Panthers return players at all three levels, and look for production from all of them. Junior defensive lineman and Senior linebacker Mason Watson look to be leaders in the box for the Panthers. In the secondary, Senior Marcus Stewart and Juniors Dezaray Delmore and Jordan Matthews are expected to continue their stellar play from last season.
Newcomers Lawrence Hillard and Deshawn Flowers are expected to push for starting positions on the offensive line and in the linebacking core, respectivley.
Coach Randall stressed that the goal of this year’s Panther team is to win district and improve on last year’s first round playoff defeat.
“With the veterans we have returning, we look to build off of last year’s season,” said Randall. “We feel that we have the talent to compete for the district championship and advance past the first round of the playoffs.”
The Panthers will begin the season with a scrimmage at Denham Springs on August 19th. The jamboree will be played at home versus Madison Prep on August 27th, before hosting Jesuit in the season opener on September 3rd. Weeks 4 and 5 pit the Panthers against two traditional 5A powers in West Monroe and Zachary, followed by the gauntlet that is District 5-5A.