CATEGORY: FOL High School Football
HED:Like father, like son
By Jake Adams
If it's true man is a product of his environment, then who better to prove the theory than Amory quarterback Will Hall?
Hall, the son of Amory head coach Bobby Hall, has been around football for most of his life. About the time most kids were learning the basic multiplication tables, Hall was learning the intricacies of the triple option.
Undefeated Amory hosts Water Valley in the first round of the Class 3A playoffs Friday night. It will be a game Hall has been preparing for since, well, since kindergarten.
"I've been coming to practice since I was four years old," Hall said. "I'd get off the bus and come to the field house every day after school."
As Will got older, his dad would even let him practice with the quarterbacks. In the fifth grade Hall began to immulate the quarterbacks at Louisville where his dad was the head coach.
"He was throwing and catching the ball as a little bitty boy," Bobby Hall said. "We're products of our environment and because of the environment he hung around in he developed a great love for the game."
Will's love for football fits right in to football-crazed Amory where every Friday night from late August until late November is the biggest night of the year.
"I can't say enough about this town," Will said. "I thank God every night that I have an opportunity to live here, where football means so much to so many people."
"I can't descibe what it's like running out of that tunnel with that smoke and running through that sign on Friday nights when the place is packed. They love it here and I'm so fortunate to be able to play here. It's the ideal situation for me the way I love football. And this town, they eat it up."
Amory and its head coach have been running the triple option for most of the last two decades and Will has been there through it all.
"I've grown up all my life running the triple option," Will said. "That's what Dad's done all his life. I've kind of grown up in it. I love it. I love running the triple option."
"I like to throw too, you know, being a quarterback. The triple option is our bread-n-butter and I've grown up in it, so I love it."
The 5-foot-9, 170-pound Hall can run the option almost to perfection. Last week, he dissected Shannon's defense to the tune of 77 yards. But it wasn't just his yards, it was his decisions. Hall made the right calls almost every time, whether it was to pitch to the tailback or keep it himself.
Hall doesn't mind giving the ball to any member of the Panthers' talented backfield.
"I would much rather pitch the ball to our tailbacks because they're great players and our fullbacks are great players," he said. "But a lot of teams choose to make me beat them so I have to keep it a lot, which is no problem."
Take for example Hall's 56-yard touchdown run on an option keeper in the fourth quarter to seal the Panthers' 21-10 win against Tupelo. Hall rushed for 95 yards in that game and has 526 on the year. He has also passed for 1,045 yards this season.
He has the physical skills, but its Hall's head that has made him such a productive quarterback. And his football intelligence isn't something he has just picked up in high school. It's also to his credit that he remembers the ones who lead him down the field his offensive linemen.
"They've been doing a great job all year," Hall said. "If it wasn't for those guys we wouldn't be racking up the yards like we have. I owe a lot to Chris Barnett, Brian Reed, Allen Glenn, Jermaine Dobbs and Carl Smith."
Bobby Hall thinks being the coach's son has helped Will in his maturation into the quarterback he has become.
"I think he's gained some advantages from the standpoint that he's been raised around the game and consequently he's very knowledgable of the game," Bobby Hall said.
And boy does he love it. In fact, both the Hall boys love their football. And not just Amory football any kind of football. If you want to find Bobby or Will Hall on Saturday or Sunday don't call between the hours of 11 a.m. and 11 p.m. There's a game on.
The two Halls enjoy football. But sometimes being the coach's son can be a lot of pressure, can't it? Not for Will.
"It's been real fun," he said. "Me and dad, we have a real special relationship. Most people in high school want to get away from their parents and stuff. I'm not really that way. My dad, he's my best friend. On Saturdays we go to Ole Miss games together and if they're not playing we'll sit at home all day and watch college football. I love my Dad and have just as much fun with him as I do any of my high school friends."
Too much of anything can get old. One might think the Halls have had a little too much football. But not Will.
"I love it," Hall said. "I love football. It's a major part of my life. I love all aspects of the game. On Saturdays and Sundays all I do is sit and watch it."