Posts Tagged ‘Mark Bliss’

Single-wing at Edwardsville High School

September 20, 2009

In June, I wrote about Edwardsville High School Head Football shifting over to the single-wing under new Head Coach Mark Bliss last year. A letter from my 8th grade English and home room teacher (whom all the boys had crushes on) caused me to think about Edwardsville football and how they are doing in this their second year with the single-wing.

A couple of searches located the Tigers’ 2009 schedule and performance to date. As members of the Southwestern Conference, they always face a tough schedule. This year the pre-season rankings had the East St. Louis Flyers at #1 in Class 6A (last year they were Class 7A state champs). USA Today ranked the Flyers at #10 in the country. The Belleville East Lancers were ranked #10 in Class 8A. Last year they made it to the second round of the playoffs and their coach thinks this is the best set of players he’s had at Belleville East. The Belleville West Maroons were ranked #8 in Class 8A. Yes, this is the Belleville West that has been in the news recently because one of its students was beaten by two others when he tried to find a seat on a school bus. I told you this was a tough conference.

The tigers started out their season with a 56-6 win over Roosevelt High of St. Louis, Missouri. Next they beat Chicago Corliss 46-0. Then conference play started. The Belleville East Lancers beat them 27-7 and last Friday they lost to East St. Louis 48-15. Now they have to win them all to have any hope of making the playoffs.

Some may blame the problems on the shift to the single-wing, but if one considers the number of points scored by the Belleville East and East St. Louis offenses, it is unlikely that the Tigers could have won regardless of what offense they were running. They need a defense.

Edwardsville Tigers Run the Single-Wing

June 29, 2009

Tex Noel informed me that the National Single-Wing Coaches Association was inducting its inaugural class of coaches into its Hall of Fame at its national symposium being held over the weekend at Edwardsville, Illinois. Of course I wanted to know more as I hadn’t paid attention to where the national symposium was being held this year. A quick look at the NSCWA web site indicated that Edwardsville High School Head Football Coach Mark Bliss and Running Backs Coach Dan Johnson were hosting the event at Edwardsville High School.

 Of course I was interested in learning about a major single-wing event but that it was held at EHS also interested me. You see, I attended Edwardsville schools for grades 4 through 9. I was on the freshman football team but got little playing time due to barely weighing 100 pounds (on hot, sweaty days I didn’t weigh that much). The coaches seemed to be afraid that I would get hurt.

 We played a T formation at that time, but Mark Bliss now has Edwardsville running the single-wing. The Tigers had a winning season overall, but lost one more conference game than they won. Being in the Southwestern Conference means they play East St. Louis, Belleville East and West, Collinsville, Granite City, O’Fallon and Alton. Winning a conference championship won’t be easy with perennial power East St. Louis often being ranked nationally. Perhaps the single-wing will give the Tigers the edge they need to beat the Flyers. Time will tell.

 On a humorous note, the brochure for the symposium states that the location was to be held at Edardsville High School. I find that funny because grade school classmates would sometimes mispronounce the school and town names as if they were spelled that way. Teachers would cringe and correct them, often to no avail.

 A concrete Tiger sat in front of the high school in my day. Rival Collinsville students would periodically pour a bucket of purple (the Kahoks’ school color) on the Tiger. I have no idea if it was moved to the new school.


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