Officials blew the call in overtime
Nick Johnston, Hartselle Enquirer
He should have had one more chance.
In a perfect world, he should have had one last chance to redeem himself, and win Hartselle the game.
But Patrick Whatley didn't get that chance.
Instead, Hartselle lost to Austin 20-14 before a packed house Friday night, but did Austin really deserve the win?
There's no doubt the Black Bears made an outstanding comeback to win the game. Quarterback Jacob Sutton and wide receiver Martin Warren could not be stopped.
But the entire game came down to one play.
A play Austin would blow coverage on, and a play the officiating crew would really mess up on.
On Hartselle's second play of overtime, quarterback Seth Watson hit Luke Mize for an apparent touchdown to tie the game at 20-all. There's no doubt Mize caught the ball, and let me tell you how I know.
To give you an idea of where I was standing from the end zone, measure the distance from your nose to this page.
Mize caught the ball about five yards away from me, and there is no way he trapped it. It was an outstanding play call, an outstanding throw, and an outstanding catch.
However, when the back judge did not signal touchdown immediately, I knew something bad was about to happen to Hartselle and the Tiger faithful.
He began shouting to the other officials, "Did he catch it? Did he catch it?" That's right, the official who was right on top of the play had to ask the other officials whether or not he caught the ball.
The other officials did not know either, and 10 seconds after the play ended, the head official signaled incomplete.
It's a shame, really. (Now before I get calls asking me if I have ever been an official, I'll save you the time and just tell you no right now.)
But, Whatley should have been able to run onto the field for the game-winning extra point, and new head coach Bob Godsey should have won his first game dressed in red and white.
But Godsey will tell you this: It should have never come down to that situation. He will tell you if his team would have made plays earlier in the game, the Tigers would be 1-0.
Another Jeremy Orr…
Remember Jeremy Orr last year?
The Hartselle running back who rushed for more than 1,000 yards and carried the Tigers throughout the season?
Well, there's a new Jeremy Orr tearing up fields this season, and he's not going anywhere anytime soon.
Danville's Jeremy Orr made defender's heads spin last Thursday night, rushing for 224 yards on 32 carries and scoring two touchdowns to lead the Hawks past Falkville 12-6.
One thing about Orr that may make opposing teams cringe is he has three years of high school left to play.
Another thing you might not know is he is the nephew of Arte Orr, the All-State Danville great from so many years ago.
Jeremy Orr claims he will be better than his uncle, and he's started out the way he needs to.