Hayesville 2021 Football Preview

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Hayesville football will be entering their third season under head coach Chad McClure. His time as head coach could be described in one word, unprecedented! In season 1 they had unprecedented success, a 1000 plus yard rusher, a winning season, and a home playoff game. All these things hadn’t happened in over a decade at Hayesville. 

Last Season

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Hayesville football locker room sign

Season 2 under McClure, a global pandemic Covid-19 happens to move Hayesvilles season to the spring. This caused Hayesville to lose double-digit transfers mostly starters to Georgia schools so they could get a full season. They went from a team that looked like they could potentially challenge Robbinsville and Murphy at the top of the conference to a team that started 0-5. 

Hayesville should have been a senior-led team with tons of experience. Instead, they had seven freshmen and 9 sophomores making up over half their team. Give the Yellow Jackets credit knowing that playoffs were out of reach they put together their best games of the season to end the year with consecutive wins. 

2021 season

Hayesville will still be a very young team with only about 5 seniors. Yet the sophomore and Junior classes will have much more experience than a typical group. The two-game win streak to end the season showed the team’s grit and toughness. The Yellow Jackets should look to get back to their 2019 season form this year and be a team that is capable of finishing in the top half of the conference and possibly surprise some people. 

Key Players:

It all starts with the quarterback Logan Caldwell, he should have spent last season as the backup quarterback. Instead due to a transfer he was thrust into the spotlight from day 1. Early on with a really tough schedule, he had some tough games. What was always there though were the flashes of talent that showed Hayesville fans that he had the ability. Then it started to come together in the last two games, Caldwells first two wins as QB1. Look for him to have a big year this year and don’t be surprised to see him contribute defensively this year as well.

Hayesville

View from the top of Hayesvilles stands, the best view from any field in the entire conference.

Jake McTaggart makes his return to Hayesville after playing in Georgia last year. McTaggart the 3star recruit with multiple mid-major D1 offers will look to have a huge season. If McTaggart can have a big year it may result in high major interest. His 6’7” frame will give Caldwell the best receiving target in the entire conference.

Taylor McClure was just a freshman last year and probably should have been on J.V. Instead he exploded onto the scene as a freshman to lead the team in tackles and was second in rushing yards. He will be a go-to player on both sides of the ball for Hayesville this year. 

Kyle Lunsford will be going into his third year on Varsity but is just a Junior. He will be a very important versatile weapon for Hayesville’s offense. 3rd in rushing and 4th in receiving a year ago expect his offensive load to go up this season.

Asher Brown saw lots of playing time last year and at times showed big-play ability for the Yellow Jackets. With some of the players in front of him now graduated, Brown will most likely start both ways at corner and receiver. Expect him to be a big-time playmaker for the Yellow Jackets on both sides of the ball. 

Hayesville Offensive and Defensive lines will be anchored by the lone senior linemen Ricky Mccullough. He will protect the QB’s blindside from the left tackle spot and play an important role on the D-line. He will be surrounded by a young but talented group with players like Lane O’Dell, Zek Furby, Jeremy Graves, Brayden Hughes, and more.

Schedule:

Hayesville

Hayesville football Schedule

Hayesville was able to put together a full ten-game schedule which was a struggle coming off of a Covid year. Hayesville’s bye week will be week 6 perfectly splitting the non-conference and conference schedule.

Hayesville will open the season with 3A Enka, even with Enka being a bigger school Hayesville stands a good chance to win this one. Enka is coming off a 1-6 where the only school they beat was a close game with Rosman. 

In week 2 Hayesville travels to Franklin in what could be a measuring stick game for the Yellow Jackets. Franklin was Hayesville’s first game last year and early turnovers plagued the Yellow Jackets. For the final three-quarters Hayesville played even with the Panthers. If Hayesville finds a way to win this tough road game they would be putting the rest of the conference on notice.

They will follow that game up by hosting Alleghany which will travel between four and five hours to play Hayesville. Alleghany had a similar year to Hayesville last year and this one could be a toss-up but Hayesville should be favored as the home school.

Hayesville then hosts Lookout Valley and again this is a matchup where Hayesville should be favored after beating them the last time they played in 2019.

Hayesville finishes their non-conference with a tough road game at Tuscola. This could be a game though if Hayesville has picked up three or four wins in a row they could pull an upset.

After a bye week, Hayesville will kick off their conference schedule with Andrews. After a tough loss, last year look for Hayesville to defend their home turf.

Follow that up with a short but tough road trip to Murphy to play the defending state champion Bulldogs.

Then back-to-back winnable home games hosting Swain then Cherokee.

Before heading to Graham county to face the Robbinsville Black Knights in the season finale.

An interesting schedule for sure but one with favorable home matchups. Every Hayesville home game looks winnable based on history and projections. If this happens Hayesville could possibly go 6-4 or find a way to pick up one road win and all of sudden you are looking at 7-3.

As well remember to tune in to fyntv.com on Friday nights this fall as Team FYN Sports will bring you every Hayesville home game live.

Preseason interview with head coach Chad McClure: https://fb.watch/7hwsteztMr/

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