Posted: Wednesday, September 5th 2012 at 1:49pm
Player of the Week: Hubbard's fast start dazzles for Leopards (Video)
By Morgan Lee Editor
HOMER -- Tyler Hubbard isn’t a braggart, and he’s not a cheerleader in the huddle.
Rather the Banks County quarterback prefers to let his play on the field do the talking for him.
“He’s not real vocal; he’s vocal when he has to be and when he is the kids take notice,” Leopards coach Philip Jones said, “but he prefers to lead by example.”
That example was more than impressive on Friday night, as the senior signal caller rolled up 306 total yards (173 passing, 133 rushing) and six touchdowns in Banks County’s 46-30 season-opening defeat of East Jackson in Homer.
For his efforts, Hubbard has been named the Gainesville Jaycees’ Player of the Week. Click "play" below to watch a video presentation with Hubbard.
After falling to East Jackson 35-7 in 2011, Hubbard and his teammates knew they would have to be at their best against the Eagles.
“We all knew it was a big game -- but I didn’t expect to do what I did. I couldn’t have done it without all the blocking and help I had from (my teammates),” Hubbard said. “Last year we lost to those guys, and we wanted to come back this year and make it a better start. I just think we were really disciplined and did a lot of things the right way. The linemen blocked all the way to the whistle, so it was just good all around.”
“All around” certainly describes Hubbard’s game, and the quarterback possesses numerous qualities that have turned him into one of the team’s leaders.
“He’s got all the intangibles, and he does things right the first time,” Jones said. “He also manages the game extremely well and distributes the ball on time and to the right players. We also expect our quarterback to run a fair amount. And though he’s not super big, he’s not scared of contact and knows when to stick it up in there.”
Hubbard helped the Leopards amass 470 yards of offense, including 295 rushing. He was aided by an outstanding performance from his offensive line, as well as a strong outing from running back Wes Faulkner, who had 161 yards rushing and a touchdown. Receivers Greg Cannon and Noah Trebec also played key roles, helping the Leopards to storm into the 2012 campaign despite graduating some key talent from a 2011 team that went to the state playoffs, hosting a postseason game for the first time since 1997.
“We lost some guys like (1,600-yard rusher) Dean (Ewing) and ‘Quez’ (receiver Marquaze Maddox) and they were big parts of the offense,” Hubbard said. “But we’re basically doing the same thing with just different guys filling the roles.”
And Hubbard says the Leopards have high goals in mind for the 2012 campaign.
“We don’t want to settle for that (2011) playoff berth. We don’t think that’s it,” Hubbard said. “We want to make it even better if we can, especially the seniors on this team.”
Certainly Hubbard will have plenty to say about that before the season is over, after all, he is the quarterback and knows that the plaudits that accompany victories can just as quickly become fingers of blame with defeats.
“It’s part of being a quarterback, and I’m fine with it. I like the pressure being on me,” Hubbard said. “I just have fun with it, leading the guys out there.”
“Everybody’s supporting the team, and it’s just a lot of fun right now,” Hubbard said.
That said he knows the joy can end quickly, so Hubbard says he and his teammates are focused squarely on this weekend’s challenge at Athens Christian.
“They’re a great team, and we can’t doubt them,” Hubbard said. “We’re just looking forward to getting out there and playing.”
Each week this football season the Jaycees will team with Jacobs Media to present a Player of the Week.
WEEK 1: Tyler Hubbard, quarterback, Banks County
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