CHHS Trojans defense gaining confidence

Published 3:00 am Tuesday, September 22, 2015

When Defensive Coordinator Chuck Dunn made his return to the Charles Henderson sideline over the summer, the excitement of the possible top-ranked defense was evident. After first four games of the regular season, the Trojan defense continues to be a work in progress, but it’s on the rise.

“We have given up too many big plays, and that has been our downfall in the two games that we have lost,” Dunn said. “It’s all about our maturity level and how fast we can grow and mature.”

In the first two losses of the regular season, the defense has let up 27 points to Daleville and 35 points to Greenville. The theme of those two games was the inability of the Trojans to let up the big play.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

“Three things that I preach to them everyday is to eliminate big plays, be great tacklers and create turnovers,” Dunn said. “We played sound defense in those games, and we just let up some big plays.”

Even with the Trojans letting up big plays on defense, Dunn continues to see improvement and is excited to see where the defense will end up in the later half of the season.

“I have slowly been seeing the players continue to evolve around my system,” Dunn said. “It’s been tough love sometimes for us.”

The motto around the Trojans practice is “You’re either going to get better or you’re going to get worse.” Trojan head coach Brad McCoy, along with Dunn, preach to their players the importance of getting better on a day-by-day basis. They want to be able to look each other in the eye and know that they are better in week 10 than they were in the first few weeks, whether that means regional championship or not.

“We were taught that by Bill Clark in our first year at Prattville High School,” Dunn said. “It’s not about how you start, it’s how you finish. That is something that I preach to my defense. We have a lot more football left and a lot more improvement to make. It’s about how you finish.”

With the season now four games in, Dunn has seen a difference in his defense since he took over in the summer. The players continue to learn the system that has brought him success at both the high school and collegiate level.

“They have knowledge of my system and of the defense,” Dunn said. “Their intelligence has grown from when we first started. The guys understand the philosophy of the defense and the schemes behind it, but they also know how they have to practice.