Brooks County coach Maurice Freeman relishes having a bye Friday after the events of last week. His Trojans defeated Valdosta 28-14, becoming the first Class AA or smaller school to beat the Wildcats in almost 50 years.
Freemen says he couldn’t blame his players if they were still joyous about the occasion.
‘’If we get lucky enough to win a state title, that would put us with two state titles in one year,’’ Freeman said. “It’s not like beating your big brother, but like beating your uncle. That’s Winnersville, USA, over there. That’s big time.’’
Freeman, who coached his alma mater to a state title in 1994, first got Valdosta on the schedule in 1996. When he returned in 2008, he scheduled Valdosta again beginning in 2010.
Freeman grew up in Brooks County and played football for the Trojans in the 1980s, a decade in which Valdosta won four state titles and two national championships. He said Brooks County didn’t dream of even playing Valdosta in those days, much less beating them.
I had a cousin growing up who played for Valdosta, and he and I used to wrestle and go at it all the time on weekends,’’ he said. “Every now and then he’d beat the stew out of me, and I’d beat the stew out of him. He was third string at Valdosta. I thought Valdosta must be pretty good then.’’
“But we didn’t even think about playing Valdosta in those days. It didn’t even come up.’’
‘’Believe me, I can get the air back out of their heads,’’ Freeman said. “We will continue to get prepared. It was one game. You don’t want to be 3-0 and then 3-7. If we don’t win another game, it’s meaningless. It’s where you stand in the end that matters.’’