Auburn (4-0) at Gadsden City (4-0)
Series record: First meeting
Last week: Gadsden City 35, Albertville 7; Auburn 42, Sidney Lanier 7
By Gene Stanley/Messenger Sports Correspondent
Remember the first game to be played in Gadsden City’s shiny new stadium?
Recall when Hoover visited the Land of the Titans?
Well, this week could be just as big and the crowd should approximate the crowds at those games.
Gadsden City is hosting the Auburn Tigers.
The Auburn High Tigers, that is.
And seriously, it should be a great crowd, with both teams ranked and undefeated. The Tigers are No. 3, behind only Hoover and Clay-Chalkville and the Titans are No. 7.
“I’m looking forward to playing such a good team from a tradition-rich program,” Titans coach Joe Billingsley said. “It’ll provide a good test to see how our team can handle the pressure of playing a great team that they’ve never seen before.”
The Tigers are averaging almost 45 points a game – and the Auburn defense has allowed only 26 points through four games. The Tigers defense held Sidney Lanier to only 12 first-half yards last week.
Auburn quarterback Cameron Echols-Luper provides a lot of the growl. Last week, he completed 10-of-17 passes for 205 yards and two touchdowns, ran for 37 yards and a score on six carries and returned a punt 43 yards for another touchdown. The senior is committed to play for Texas A&M.
Luper is far from the Tigers’ only standout athlete. Linebacker Reuben Foster has committed to make the switch from Auburn High to Auburn University.
Most of the Tiger offensive lineup is revamped this year because four starters graduated and are now playing college ball.
“That whole team is extra athletic,” Billingsley said. “And they’re very well-coached. We’re going to have to be on our game if we want to win.”
Tim Carter has coached the Tigers since 2006 and has accumulated a 60-15 record so far.
Last week’s victory over the Aggies maintained Gadsden City’s hold on the top spot in Region 7 along with second-ranked Clay-Chalkville.
Against Albertville, Chris Lawrence rushed 15 times for 214 yards and two touchdowns.
Trevor Sandridge added 113 yards on 16 rushes, while C.J. Moore was 7-of-10 passing for 158 yards.