View Tanner Barnes' Full Interview here!
Each week, the Ozone's Justin Sampson will sit down with one quarterback to preview the KY3 Game of the Week. Our second installment features Cabool three-sport standout Tanner Barnes, who will lead the Bulldogs into Hollister in search of their first win this Friday.
Sampson: You have the unique distinction of starting at varsity since you were a freshman. Is it hard to put into perspective how rare that is?
Barnes: I just got put in that place freshman year. (Coach) Brookshire didn't want to play me freshman year and he didn't want to start me at quarterback. He used the term "throw in the fire", but I'm glad he did it and I've learned a lot.
Sampson: Starting your high school career 0-20 isn't something many kids have to go through, but what did it teach you?
Barnes: It wasn't good. I don't like losing, but it did grow us a lot as a team. Comparing teams, you look at Liberty, Darin Acklin got there and they didn't start too well, and now look at them. That's what we're pointing towards, and I'm glad to maybe be the start of that.
Sampson: You started something last year going 6-6. What did that do for the energy going into this summer?
Barnes: Guys are excited and love the game. They're excited after a guys makes a good play and it's just fun to be out there.
Sampson: You lost your top rusher, receiver, and tackler from a year ago. What does that put on you as far as your responsibilities?
Barnes: We lost a lot of speed and things we've got to make up for, but I think we've got the talent to make up for those things. We have to make smarter. We can't beat teams just off of speed this year. If we make a mistake, we can't just outrun them, so we have to play smarter.
Sampson: You were dealing with the flu last week. How bad did it get during the game?
Barnes: About halfway into the second quarter, I was running out of gas. By halftime, I was feeling better and that break helped. I got taken out of the last defensive drive in the fourth quarter to play offense and I was pretty ready to go.
Sampson: Given that you were under the weather, is a 13-6 loss to Ash Grove deceiving as far as what you guys can do?
Barnes: We played terribly for the team that we are. We can be a great team if we play smart, and I think this week we're going to be ready.
Sampson: What is a typical gameday like for you?
Barnes: I wake up nervous. I go through a regular school day, looking at your teammates down the hall all day and thinking: "We're going to be out there and at war tonight. I've got your back."
Sampson: What specific challenges will Hollister provide?
Barnes: They're big up front, so we can't be lazy on the line. I can't throw two interceptions like I did last week, and it won't happen.
News Article By: Ozarks Sports Zone