0

Undefeated Seminole surprised by swift start

Led by Brendan Kimble (5), Seminole County’s defense is allowing just 13 points per game. The Herald No. 2 Indians are 4-0 and ranked No. 1 in the Class A public school power rankings. (Staff photo: Tim Morse)

Led by Brendan Kimble (5), Seminole County’s defense is allowing just 13 points per game. The Herald No. 2 Indians are 4-0 and ranked No. 1 in the Class A public school power rankings. (Staff photo: Tim Morse)

DONALSONVILLE — Seminole County’s Brendan Kimble may never consider a career in coaching high school football. But when speaking of his team’s off-the-field accolades this week, he sounded like a seasoned high school coach.

The Herald No. 2 Indians are the top-ranked Class A public school in the GHSA power ranking poll, which is used at season’s end to determine seeds for the state playoffs. Rankings are determined based on a team’s record and strength of schedule.

Also, Seminole moved up to fourth in Class A in the Georgia Sportswriters Association Prep Football Poll, moving up three spots despite being off last week.

“I haven’t even looked at those things,” Kimble said. “We just play one game at a time. We want to go out and win every game. We just play and hope for the victory.”

It has been an interesting ride for Seminole County this season. The Indians, in what many perceived would be a rebuilding season, have rolled to a 4-0 start with victories over Early County, Turner County, Clinch County and Pelham. With the exception of a one-point win over Early in the season opener, the Indians haven’t really been challenged.

While the statewide recognition has been good for Seminole County fans, coach Alan Ingram has a ho-hum attitude.

“I’ve been in this long enough to know that none of that means anything until about December,” he said. “It’s good for our kids to get some recognition. We have an exceptional group of kids. They are not the most talented, but they are so coachable. You don’t find that often in today’s society.”

A big key to the season so far has been the play of running back Robert Speight, whose speed has benefited the team’s option attack. Speight is more known for his basketball skills. However, after breaking his collarbone last year and missing the season, he has returned with a commitment to the team.

In the Indians’ last game, a 42-12 rout of then-Herald No. 3 Pelham, Seminole and Speight ran the option to perfection.

With the team opening Region 1-A play Friday night at Terrell County, fine-tuning the option attack is essential against the upstart Greenwave.

“These kids work hard on the option,” Ingram said. “The coaches work hard on it. I get to stand back and watch it. I still think there is a lot of room for improvement. If we’re going to run the option, we’ve got to run it to perfection.”

While the offense has performed brilliantly, the defense may be the biggest strength. The Indians are allowing just 13 points per game. Ingram knows Seminole will have to keep that pace as region play begins.

Speight said the team’s winning formula is simple.

‘We’re just playing as a team,” he said. “We’re listening to what our coaches tell us to do and doing it.”

Ingram said before the season he didn’t envision starting the season unbeaten.

“I thought (with our inexperience) we could have been 0-4 to start the year,” he said. “We’re traditionally a late-blooming team because we have so many players who play on both sides of the ball — it’s hot and they get tired. They may be saving their best for the offense, or on defense.

“I think being 4-0 has surprised all of us.”

With a little more than half of the season left, the Indians know a lot can happen. They are currently the highest ranked public school in Class A.

By the middle of December, they hope to be in the same spot they are today — the highest ranked public school after a potential state championship.

“We just want to keep getting better,” Kimble said. “If we keep doing that, the sky is definitely the limit.”