Game Of The Week: Columbia at Jefferson Davis County

Game of the Week: Columbia @ Jefferson Davis County
Published: Sep. 15, 2023 at 12:09 AM CDT
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PINE BELT, Miss. (WDAM) - It’ll be a battle of the unbeatens when the Columbia High School Wildcats head to Bassfield to face the Jefferson Davis County High School Jaguars.

Wildcats head coach Chip Bilderback said he is fully aware of what JDC (3-0) is capable of.

“I’d be hard pressed to find a better team around in 3A football,” Bilderback said.

The 2021 Class 3A state champions consistently have run the table in their classification, and Columbia is excited to get another shot of Jaguar football.

“They’re as good as they come I would think,” Bilderback said. “You look at what they’ve done and the history of their program and everything like that, and I think that both teams are gonna come out gearing to go, fired up, ready to play some football.”

On the other side, JDC coach Lance Mancuso said he using the Jags’ tough opponent to set the tone on what a playoff opponent would look like.

Mancus said he wants his Jaguars to match the intensity of a team like Columbia (3-0).

“This is the biggest challenge for us, so far, this year, maybe the biggest challenge we’ve had in a few years.” Mancuso said.

“Our guys just have to come out and focus. They have to understand that the first snap is just as important as the last snap. Hopefully, they can come out and duplicate the effort they’ve given in the past few weeks.”

In last year’s meeting between the two schools, the Jaguars grabbed a 41-22 victory on Columbia’s home turf.

This year will mark the ninth time the two programs have faced one another, with the series tied at four wins apiece.

As the Wildcats prepare for Jefferson Davis’ home field this season, they’ll hope to use the tough environment to their advantage.

“The reason we want this game is, it’s probably gonna be the atmosphere and the type of opponent that you would face in the second, third round of South State (playoffs).” Bilderback said.

“We want our kids to get used to playing in that big-time environment. When you go over there, it’s gonna be an intense atmosphere. I think at the end of the night, it’s gonna make our football team and our football program a lot better having to play a quality opponent.”

Kickoff is slated for Friday, at 7 p.m.

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