25 Teams in 25 Days

Moss Point football seeks run to Oxford behind big offensive line

The Moss Point football team is entering its first season under head coach Eugene Harmon.
The Moss Point football team is entering its first season under head coach Eugene Harmon. ttisbell@sunherald.com

With its fourth head coach in the six seasons, Moss Point football hopes to find its way back to prominence under new leadership.

Eugene Harmon was promoted to head coach this summer following the departure of Willie Brown, who is now the defensive coordinator at Hazlehurst after spending the last three seasons in Moss Point.

Harmon is confident the transition has been a smooth one for all involved.

“The coaching staff hasn’t changed much from last year,” Harmon said. “The only thing that changed is Coach Brown left and I’ve moved up to head coach.”

Maurice Gowdy is now the Moss Point offensive coordinator after serving as the defensive backs coach, and Derrick Caples has moved from offensive coordinator to defensive coordinator.

Moss Point will no longer run the Wing-T offense that Brown installed. Instead, the Tigers will operate a run-based spread that will run out of several formations.

While the Tigers are replacing their starting quarterback, Romello Leggins, and top rusher, Omni Wells, they do return the majority of starters on an offensive line that was one of the best on the Coast last season.

Six-foot-2, 325-pound senior TeVaun Weatherspoon and 6-foot-1, 330-pound senior Antwoine Bailey will move inside to the guard spots after playing last year at the tackles. The rest of the offensive line will be comprised of 5-10, 235-pound junior Jaylen Rudolph, 6-3, 320-pound Kelvis Causey and 5-10, 185-pound Tevin Fairley.

Harmon believes his team’s fate will be tied to the play of his line on both sides of the ball.

“If they play like we expect them to, we’re looking to have a very successful season,” he said.

Moss Point will be breaking in a freshman quarterback this season in Ruben Lee, who stands 5-10, 170.

He hasn’t played a down of high school football, but Harmon believes Lee will be a good fit at quarterback.

“He’s been playing quarterback probably since he came out of the womb,” Harmon said. “He has a great arm, accuracy. He’s the most accurate quarterback on the roster right now. He’s football intelligent. He studies, knows how to break down coverage.”

He’ll have a handful of gifted players to hand the ball off to, including junior Tytus Miles and senior Devin Simpson, a 6-foot, 215-pound athlete who will also feature prominently on defense as a linebacker/safety. Miles ran 111 times for 601 yards and two scores last year.

“(Miles) and Devin compete in the weight room and they compete while doing conditioning tests,” Harmon said. “We look for big things out of both of them.”

Junior Deovion Robinson, senior Kobie Ruffin, junior Isaac Gowdy and junior tight end Keandre Booker will be among the targets for Lee in the passing game.

Harmon said the goal is to pass for 1,500 yards and rush for 2,000 yards as an offense this season.

On defense, Moss Point will likely operate out of a 3-3 front or a 4-2-5 formation.

Expect Simpson to be all over the field.

“He’s been starting at our dog safety position,” Harmon said. “He’s a football player. He has football speed.”

Booker and senior Terrance Gains will work at the two defensive ends while senior Matthew Sellers (5-10, 265) and junior Dewayne Sipp are expected to start at defensive tackle.

Simpson, junior Keiyonta Webb and senior Javon Williams will all see time at linebacker.

Gowdy, Robinson, junior Carlos Mathews and senior Anthony Kirkland will lead the secondary.

Kirkland should see time on the offensive side as well.

“He can line up at quarterback, running back, receiver,” Harmon said. “We’ll try to get him the ball. He’s so explosive. We’ll look to get him 10-15 touches.”

Moss Point will face another difficult non-region schedule starting with a home game against rival Pascagoula on Aug. 18. The Tigers will then travel to Gautier and Hattiesburg.

Moss Point will hit the road for a Sept. 8 game when it travels to take on Byrd, Louisiana, at the Independence Stadium in Shreveport.

The Tigers were a late fill-in for the game when a team dropped out.

“It just pretty much fell into our lap,” Harmon said. “It’s a game to get our kids some great exposure.

“It’s a trip they haven’t had a chance to go on. A lot of our kids have never had a chance to travel on charter buses. It will be something new for them. Hopefully, it will prepare us before we make that trip to Oxford (for the Class 4A state title game).”

Moss Point schedule

Aug. 18: Pascagoula

Aug. 25: at Gautier

Sept. 1: at Hattiesburg

Sept. 8: Byrd (at Shreveport, La.)

Sept. 15: Wayne County

Sept. 22: Greene County

Sept. 29: at East Central

Oct. 6: at Vancleave

Oct. 13: Pass Christian

Oct. 20: at St. Stanislaus

Oct. 27: Bay High

Moss Point roster

2 Isaac Gowdy

3 Deovion Robinson

4 Carlos Mathews

6 Devin Simpson

7 Justin Logan

9 Anthony Kirkland

10 Marquez Smith

11 Jacolbian Franklin

12 Ruben Lee

13 Kobie Ruffin

14 Matthew Young

15 Jyrel Matthews

16 Keandre Booker

17 Keiyonta Webb

19 Micah Williams

20 Dominick Dees

21 Tytus Miles

22 Joseph Nicholson

23 Antwone Booker

24 Jaylen Stallworth

27 Javon Williams

29 Marquis Windham

31 Darius Lee

32 Kameron Creer

35 Austin Herrera

36 Deon Boyd

37 Jalen Putnam

38 Jordan Alford

40 Calisto Wells

50 TeVaun Weatherspoon

51 Sidney Middleton

52 Matthew Sellers

53 Isaiah Herndon

54 Terrance Gains

55 Tevin Fairley

57 Geoffery Harmon

58 Trevon Bailey

59 Fredrick Souza

61 Alex Gaines

62 Jaylen Jackson

63 Jaylen Rudolph

64 Arthur Griffin

70 Tyler Hunnings

71 Reginald Collins

73 Kelvis Causey

74 Michael Tapper

75 Antwoine Bailey

80 Desmond Harris

81 Laroy Sullivan

87 Lashun Coleman

92 Dewanye Sipp

94 Lajulian Craig

98 Dalton Henderson

About this series

This is the first of the Sun Herald’s annual series called 25 Teams in 25 Days, which previews all the high school teams in South Mississippi for the upcoming football season.