The 2012 season is one Tift County likely wish to forget.
The Blue Devils failed to win a single game in Region 1-AAAAAA, and finished 2-8 on the year.
"A lot of people in this state are going to have a hard time winning
games in this region, and that's not to make excuses," says head coach John Reid.
They say that season is motivating this year's team.
The Blue Devils return around 20 seniors who are looking to have the first winning season in their careers.
Reid knows it will be tough, but he says his team has rallied around each other.
"We have goals. And these kids want to be a part of that, and I think they've bought into it," he says. "That's what the fun of it is. In the next couple of weeks, everything starts counting."
Reid believes the Blue Devils have vastly improved from last year, and he hopes that shows in the win-loss column.
But he's not letting the team play any cupcakes.
"We have a tough pre-region schedule," says Reid. "I think we've scheduled some good opponents for not only a scrimmage, but a first game. We'll be tested early."
The Blue Devils will scrimmage Monroe this Friday. The Tornadoes made it to the second round of the state playoffs in 2012.
Among the games that count, Tift takes on Westover and Worth County, two other state playoff teams from a year ago.
Reid and his players believe the tough schedule will have his players ready for the grind of Region 1-AAAAAA.
"We play in one of the toughest regions in America," says senior OL Blake Suggs. "Our non-region opponents were deep playoff teams last year, so they're going to help us prepare for our region schedule."
The Blue Devils open the 2013 campaign with one of those playoff teams on August 30, when Westover travels to Tifton.
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