By Tim Chambers
Tomahawk Sports Editor
It’s always nice to roll back the clock and think of the way things were. Barbara Streisand had a hit song in the 80’s that said just that.
She sang a particular line in the song that caught my attention when thinking about the upcoming football season. Wouldn’t it be special if we could do 2017 all over again?
She raised the question, could we? Would we?
The answer is simple, but it’s time to put those questions on the back burner for now.
It’s time to focus on the 2018 football season, the remaining cast and some others who will likely be thrown into the mix.
People often want to compare so let’s have a little fun with this.
Troy Arnold versus Nathan Arnold:
They have some similarities but are entirely different players.
Nathan holds the record for the most passing yards thrown in a regular season and career. So how does Troy compare to that?
Both have the same last name, and both are like
having a coach on the field. Nothing else needs to be
said about Nathan, who is
now a freshman quarterback for the University of the Cumberlands.
He’ll be remembered as one of the best, but a lot can be said about Troy.
You won’t find a tougher competitor anywhere. He showed that by throwing two touchdowns in a recent scrimmage at Tennessee High.
He’s the type of quarterback that makes good decisions, but he’s also that type of player that can be physical.
Hitting Troy when he leaves the pocket is like trying to tackle a tractor-trailer. He’s also a physical force when he lines up at defensive end.
Tyler Norris versus Hayden Osborne:
Hayden collected 157 tackles last year including 15 for losses and 11 sacks. He will be remembered as one of the toughest kids ever to wear a Longhorn uniform. His 157 tackles is also another school record.
He and Nathan were members of the All-State team.
Tyler can be the same type of player and has been for the most part. He collected 130 tackles last season and had the
98-yard fumble return for a touchdown against Happy Valley that kept their record unblemished.
Norris is one of the most underrated players in Northeast Tennessee. He has a nose for finding the football like a bloodhound does in finding evidence.
Zack Eller versus Shane Greer
Shane left Johnson County as the school’s all-time career leading receiver. He had 121 catches for 2311 yards over a three-year span.
That definitely earns him the nod as one of the best receivers to ever play here.
Eller is an entirely different type of receiver but just as effective. He is a big-time threat to turn a small gain into a score.
His value to the team can’t be measured due to his athleticism. Eller is the league’s top kickoff return specialist averaging over 30 yards per return last year. He also possesses excellent hand and is a standout defensive back.
We could go on and on comparing this one to that one but why bother? This is a totally different team and an entirely different season.
The 2018 Longhorns won’t have 19 returning seniors, but they do have a roster with some quality football players. It’s nice to set your goals high and dream of a repeat but this year’s squad needs to look past nobody.
Maybe Nathan Lane will help take them down memory lane for a second time. It could be somebody different stepping up each game.
Barbara Streisand’s song “the way we were” is nice to remember but I prefer “a star is born.”
We will know more in the upcoming weeks.
Tim Chambers is the sports editor for the Tomahawk. You can reach him by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.