H.V., N. Greene matchup milestone for coaches

  By Jeff Birchfield
  star staff
  jbirchfield@starhq.com
  Friday night atop Warrior Hill, Stan Ogg will go for his 50th career victory as Happy Valley's head football coach. North Greene head coach James Rosenbalm will be making his debut.
  Ogg enters his eighth season as HV coach with an overall record of 49-29. Asked about averaging seven wins over his first seven years.
  "That's a credit to the players we have had," said Ogg. "We've had some good players and excellent assistant coaches."
  The first season, 1997, when the Warriors recorded the best regular season in school history, going 10-0, holds great meaning to Ogg.
  "The first year was awful special as we did have some success," said Ogg. "We won a couple of rounds in the playoffs. Those playoff games were awful exciting."
  Other specific games stand out during Ogg's tenure.
  "I remember the very first game (a 21-12 HV win) against a pretty good Daniel Boone team," recalled Ogg. "Obviously playing against Elizabethton the last few years have been fun. We've been on the rough end of a couple of those games, but we've had some success against them.
  "The rivalry games with Erwin are always good games. Last year's Elizabethton game was emotional. It was a special one."
  Rosenbalm will try to create his own memories. He makes a head coaching debut for the North Greene Huskies after serving the last four years as an assistant to Tim Bailey.
  "Those are big shoes to fill," said Rosenbalm. "I will do what I can. I've been dreaming about this first game. I literally can't get it off my mind."
  Unusual in its preparation for an opening game, Happy Valley actually scrimmaged against another team on Monday.
  "We normally wouldn't bring a team in on game week," said Ogg, whose team was 9-1 in 2003. "We did bring Daniel Boone in and practiced with them. It gave us a lot better looks than just practicing against ourselves.
  "We tried to limit the contact, but there was some pretty good contact. We learned; it told us where we were and where we need to go."
  The Huskies plan on operating out of a shotgun formation with a two-back set. Their coach feels the offense could be successful against Happy Valley.
  "Last year we could pass on them," said Rosenbalm, referring to a closer-than-expected 29-12 loss. "A couple of years ago we picked up some yards running. We look to gain yards on the outside. Hopefully we can kick it to the outside or have some quick fly patterns."
  For Happy Valley, the offensive and defensive line have question marks going into the year. Ogg and defensive coordinator Greg Hyder both are pleased with the progress of the units.
  "They're getting better everyday," said Ogg. "I know we graduated three starters on the offensive line and two of four on the defensive line, but the ones coming back have played an awful lot of football.
  "We are trying to develop depth on the offensive line, but they are learning. Coach Hyder has done an outstanding job with them. We're asking a lot of them, but they're well coached and they like to learn."
  The Huskies (4-6 in '03) do have some talented skill players starting with junior quarterback Dusty Neal, whom Rosenbalm described as one of the best players ever at North Greene.
  "He has matured and has helped us as coaches out quite a bit," said Rosenbalm. "He works sun up to sundown."
  Matthew Ormsbee is their top returnee at wide-out on offense and as a linebacker on defense. Newcomer Josh Allen has speed to match Ormsbee, with cornerback Micah Dearstone, linebacker Robert Moorman and lineman Bart Gaby as other players expected to star for the Huskies.
  The brother duo of David and Dalas Lynch start at running back for the Baileyton team.
  Talk about individual players for the Warriors, Drew Davis used last year's North Greene as a springboard for being selected to the Tennessee Sportswriters Association All-State Football team.
  He caught a 60-yard touchdown pass from Todd Caldwell and added an 82-yard interception return for a touchdown.
  The game was also a confidence booster for Michael Hollifield, who rushed for two touchdowns in a role as starting tailback.
  Ryan Garland had a good all-around game with 75 rushing yards, 44 receiving yards and grabbing an interception.
  Defensively, the Huskies are experimenting with a variety of defenses from a 4-4 to a 6-2-3 trying to offset a size deficit they will face against HV.
  Overall conditioning is one area the Warriors are working at improving.
  "We need to be in better shape than where we are at," said Ogg. "We only switched to afternoon practices a week or so ago. We're a little behind on that.
  "What worries me more is game type conditioning where you are out there two hours and are not coming off the field when it's hot, hot, hot. We won't know how we will handle that until we get there."
  Despite his new status as head coach, Rosenbalm brings some good advice to the job from his father.
  "He told me I better be willing to praise the boys for the wins and put the losses on my own shoulders," he said.
  First year's expectations are high for Rosenbalm.
  "I want us to have a 6-4 win-loss ratio," said Rosenbalm. "We want to make the playoffs and keep up the legacy Tim Bailey set before us. I hope we have a good healthy season."
  Ogg responded to the question of what he would pass on to Rosenbalm as a new coach.
  "People still give me advice, but number one is surround yourself with good people," said Ogg. "We've been fortunate to have good coaches work with us. First and foremost, that's the thing in making the program good."