By JOSH FRYE
News Staff Writer
Storm clouds are brewing over Escambia County High School as new the head coach of the Blue Devils, Scott Mason, takes control over the whistle.
Mason comes to the Blue Devils with an extensive and successful coaching career.
“I have wanted the head coaching job of this football team for many years,” Mason said. “I love it here. The school, program, students, staff and principal are outstanding. I truly believe that the Lord led me here at the right time.”
Mason is a proud Native American and a member of the Choctaw Nation. That cultural influence, along with many friends within the Poarch community, is just one of the many driving influences that brings him to our community and school.
Most notably, Mason is known as the inventor of the “Thunder and Lightning” offense tactic. This tactic involves setting a very a quick tone for the game. It is now being implemented by high school, college and even NFL teams all over the country.
“The offense tactic that I developed has taken over 25 years of work and development,” the coach said. “It involves parts and pieces of items that are fun to the kids and that are fun to watch for the fans in the stands. It is best thought of as basketball on grass. It is a fast-paced offense that is built on a no-huddle system. In simple form, it’s a fast-paced air attack.”
The “Thunder and Lightning” tactic is designed to throw the opposing team off and keep them guessing without giving the defensive lines time to adjust to the play.
“I am not afraid to go to the air against our opponent,” Mason said. “It keeps them on their feet and eliminates reads. If you go to the air enough, eventually you get good at it. We are going to be the team that is fast-paced and we want our opponents to press us. As they press us, we will get better and better. We want to score as much as we can, as quickly as possible.”
The quickness of this tactic does more than put points and yards on the board for the young players.
It builds confidence within the player on and off the field. That confidence, to Mason, is the very building blocks that will develop the player in everyday life situations and he takes pride in being able to instill that attitude and bring out his players’ very best at all times.
“[Former ECHS coach] Rico Jackson is a fantastic coach and person,” Mason said. “He has accomplished great things with this team and has left the program on its way up. We will be turning the notch up. This will be the stadium that opposing teams dread to visit.”
The Blue Devils will face Northview at home on May 17 for a scrimmage.