4 Questions with Adairsville head coach Jon Cudd

Today’s interviewee is new Adairsville’s Jon Cudd, whose team defeated Cherokee Bluff 51-50 Friday in Cudd’s first game as head coach. Adairsville scored five touchdowns of 68 yards or longer and won on a two-point conversion in overtime. Cudd had been on Adairsville’s staff since 2008 and was promoted from defensive coordinator. His family from South Carolina and sister from Tennessee came to see his head-coaching debut at the northwest Georgia school.

1. Is this what we can expect every game from your teams? “I hope not. I think I lost seven years of my life. If you were a spectator and didn’t have a dog in the fight, I’m sure it was a great game to watch. We’ve always been a team that has taken chances, and if we think a play is there, we’re going to try to make teams pay for it. But we’ve got to get better on defense, no doubt. I hope there aren’t many 51-50 games. I don’t know if I can survive the season.”

2. What happened on the big plays – five long touchdowns? “Chris Roper broke the first one. Our quarterback had come out of the game for a moment, and Chris, he’s played some quarterback for us, and it was a wildcat deal. He ran a little quarterback counter, and it opened up for him [74 yards]. On the next one, we just ran power. I want to say power weak, and the offensive line did a good job and we got the back side sealed off, and it just opened up again [for Ethan Blome, 80 yards]. The next play [a 67-yard pass to Blome from Jonathan Gough] was a game plan deal. We thought we could get them lined up a certain way. It was a trick play, so I can’t give it away. Caden Copeland scored the last two [73-yard run, 73-yard reception]. One was a jet sweep, the other a little seam route off the jet. Both times the defenders’ eyes got caught in the backfield.”

3. You went for two points and the win on your possession in the first overtime. Why? “The game was just so long, and we were gassed, and I felt like if we could get the touchdown there, we could get the two. We already knew the two-point play we wanted to run, so we went ahead and did it. I just really didn’t want to play another snap at the point. We were going to find out whether we win or lose right there. Some say you play for the win on the road and the tie at home, but we’ve done it twice at home and it’s worked both times.” [Adairsville defeated Cass 29-28 in similar fashion Aug. 27, 2021.]

4. What’s been the reaction of the coaches and players and fans? “We were all relieved at that point. We knew going in that we had to play extremely well to beat Cherokee Bluff. They’ve had a good program [21-3 record with two Class 3A region titles the past two seasons], and we saw them against Kell on TV and knew we had to play out of our minds. We had some chances to go up by three scores, but they always made a play. Our kids were extremely fired up. They wanted it for this senior class. After the game, I’ve heard from a lot of friends and other coaches, just giving congratulations. We have a saying that at Adairsville, we don’t do anything easy. It was an exciting game.”

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