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Senior linebacker to lead the Falcon defense

Shreveport Times

(Editor’s note: The high school football season in northwest Louisiana will launch Sept. 6 with the regular season slated to end Nov. 8. Today, The Times takes a look at Northwood in our countdown to kickoff.)

There were a lot of good times within Northwood football over the past several seasons under now retired coach Jim Gatlin. Now, everywhere he goes, new coach Austin Brown hears the questions about following a living legend.

But Falcon football should be in good hands this fall with Gatlin’s choice as head coach running the show. And Northwood has plenty of carryover talent from last season to make the kind of run Falcon fans have become accustomed to. 

Northwood is short on senior numbers (12), but each member of the dandy dozen is talented. 

MORE:Falcons’ James Jefferson makes LASC history

The offense starts with big lineman Cam Foster, speedy running back Terrence Cook and one of the most intelligent centers in the business in James Jefferson. Senior wide receivers Jimmie Evans, Cameron Thoele and Julian Wyatt give sophomore quarterback Mason Welch plenty of targets. 

Senior linebacker Jer’Maria Bailey anchors a defense that includes senior safety Jadarius Berry and safety Jadarius Berry.

“We have a strong group of sophomores that I liken to the group that came with Luke Bogan,” Brown said. “They won two city championships. There are some playmakers in that group.”

Welch is a big presence under center at 6-foot-3 and 210 pounds. He offers a different skill set from predecessor Bogan. Opponents will find out about that soon enough.

“For this team to be successful our kids will have to trust and rely on our senior leadership,” Brown said. 

Jefferson, a.k.a. “The Governor,” is the kind of leader every team can build around. He’s the first African-American state president of Student Council and he talks like a politician. 

“I just want to make sure I’m not the last,” Jefferson said with a smile during Wednesday’s Caddo Schools media event. “I love it when they call me ‘The Governor.’ It’s high expectations, but I want to deliver.”

Twitter: @JimmyWatson6

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Northwood Falcons 

Head coach: Austin Brown (First season) 

2019 record: 9-3, 3-1 District 1-4A (State quarterfinals) 

Key players: James Jeffferson, Sr.; OL Cam Foster, Sr.; RB Terrence Cook, Sr.; WR Cameron Thoele, Sr.; WR Julian Wyatt, Sr.; S/RB Jadarius Berry; WR Jimmie Evans, Sr.; LB Mason Welch, Soph.; LB Jer’Maria Bailey, Sr.

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Northwood’s Terrence Cook talks touchdown versus Parkway

Shreveport Times

2020 Northwood schedule

Oct. 2 Southwood

Oct. 9 at North DeSoto

Oct. 16 at Wossman

Oct. 23 BTW

Oct. 30 at Evangel

Nov. 6 Woodlawn

Nov. 13 at Leesville

Nov. 20 Red River