Trent Hammond told his players after Friday night’s 26-13 win over Southaven, “7-0 means nothing if you don’t finish.”
Tupelo will need to finish every play this upcoming week when they travel to Batesville to face more-than-likely Mississippi’s new No. 1 team in the AP poll, South Panola. THS hasn’t beaten the Tigers since Coach Phil Ferguson’s first season in 2001. The Golden Wave defeated the Tigers in Batesville, 17-14, that year. Since then, Tupelo has lost the last 12 contests.
But speaking of Tupelo’s best start since 1990, let’s take a quick look at that memorable football season.
- THS went 12-2 under Ricky Black, now head coach at Jackson Prep, in 1990. Meridian defeated THS, 36-22, in the school’s first state championship football appearance.
- 1990 was Black’s final season at THS before taking a job with first-year MSU coach Jackie Sherrill at Mississippi State University.
- Coach Black was assisted that season by Bob Monroe (DB coach), Chris Coleman (OLB), Fred Davis (WR), Larry Harmon (RB), Pete McMurrary (OL), and Jimmy Mitchell (ILB).
- Coach Black was recognized in September 2012 for winning his 300th career football game. He won 93 at Tupelo.
- Kirk Presley, former 1st round MLB draft pick for the Mets, was the punter. Senior Adam Paxton, son of Mississippi Senator and THS alum Nancy Collins, was the quarterback. Mayor Jason Shelton was a freshman.
- Tupelo had three D1 signees: WR Chris Jones (Mississippi State), LB Marcus Gary (Memphis State), and Mond Wilson (Clemson).
- Tupelo won nine-straight in 1990 before losing to Starkville, 19-16, at Robbins Field in the final game of the regular season.
- THS defeated Greenwood twice; 17-0, in Week 7 and in the 2nd round playoffs, 18-3. Greenwood was coached by David Bradberry, who coached the Golden Wave from 2009-2012.
Big thanks to former THS assistant coach Bob Monroe for the detailed information.